Challenging Vacation Workout – Come On…Try it!

Memorial Day weekend is just around the corner, and if you’re anything like me, that means you’ll be packing your bags and heading out for a weekend of sunshine, good friends, and fun in the sun.

With no plans or an itinerary to follow, vacation workouts have become one of my favorite out-of-town activities.  Whether I opt for a long run to clear my head or switch things up and plan a short boot camp style beach session, I use these unrestricted vacation workouts as a time to push my fitness dreams further.

Finding a fitness facility while out-of-town can prove to be difficult, so I love when I find a new, alternative workout to incorporate into my training schedule.  My latest find (okay…obsession), the “Kick Butt Beach Workout” comes from  It’s not long, but if you push yourself, and put in max effort, it is a killer routine.


*Not heading to the beach?  No worries? Simply find a flat spot at your vaca destination where you can set up your distance markers and voila! you have your training area.

To begin, set up two markers on the beach, spaced about 30 to 40 feet apart. Or use landmarks like lifeguard stands. (Try to stick to the hard sand near the water.) Also, keep a water bottle handy. Do a 5-minute walk or jog on the beach to warm up. Then complete the following circuit up to two times, following the modifications if necessary. When you’re done, take a 5-minute stroll to cool down.


1) Walking lunges — 30 seconds


Start at one marker, feet together, hands on hips. Step right foot about two feet forward and lower until right thigh is almost parallel with ground. (Make sure right knee doesn’t jut past toes; if so, step feet wider.) Step left foot next to right and repeat with left leg. Continue alternating until you reach second marker. If time allows, turn around and repeat.


2) Plyo lunges — 30 seconds


Assume lunge position, right leg forward, left leg back, legs about two feet apart. Lower body toward ground until right thigh is almost parallel to ground. Jump up and switch legs mid-air so left leg is now forward, right leg back. Continue repeating. (Modified: Rather than jumping, do alternating lunges, stepping one leg back at a time.)


3) Jog — 30 seconds


Jog back and forth between your markers.


4) Box sprints — 30 seconds


Start at one marker and sprint to second marker. Face first marker and shuffle right 8 times. Turn so you’re facing second marker and jog backward to first marker. Facing second marker, shuffle right 8 times. Repeat as many times as you can.


5) Squats — 30 seconds


Stand in place, feet shoulder-width apart, hands on hips. Lower body toward ground, keeping knees behind toes, until thighs are almost parallel to ground. Release to start and repeat.


6) Squat thrusts — 30 seconds


Stand with hands by sides. Drop to ground in crouched position, hands on ground. Hop feet behind you until body’s in plank, one long line from toe to head. Hop feet back to hands. Stand and repeat. (Modified: Step one foot back at a time to plank position, then feet back to hands, roll to standing.)


7) Sprints with push-ups — as long as you need


Start at one marker and sprint to second marker Do 5 push-ups, either on knees or supported only by hands and feet. Sprint back to first marker and do 4 push-ups. Continue sprinting back and forth between markers, doing one less push-up at each end until you’re down to only 1 push-up.


8) Jumping jacks — as long as you need


Do 10 jumping jacks. March in place for 8 counts. Do 10 more jumping jacks.


9) Deep side lunges with water bottle — as long as you need


Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding water bottle horizontally between both hands at chest height, elbows bent. Take slow but giant step, at least two feet, right. Bend right knee to 90 degrees, keeping knee behind toes. Place bottle on sand by right foot and hold 2 counts. Step back to start. Repeat side lunge to right, this time picking up bottle. Continue in this pattern for a total of 10 times. Switch sides and repeat.


10) Crab walks — as long as you need


Sit on sand with feet flat, knees bent and hands behind you, fingers pointing toward you. Lift butt off sand and crab walk backward as fast as you can for 20 counts, keeping butt lifted and abs pulled in. (One count equals each time you move a hand.) Turn around and crab walk back to starting point.


11) Planks — 1 minute


Get on hands and knees in sand. Place wrists under shoulders and if possible, lift knees off ground so body’s supported only by hands and feet. Contracting abs, hold 30 seconds. Release for a quick break and repeat once. (Modified: Stay on knees for 5 counts, then go into plank 5 counts. Repeat 6 times.)

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