5 outdoor activities that blast calories

It happens to the best of us. June arrives, with her bright mornings and warm evenings, and suddenly the thought of working out indoors doesn’t look as appealing as it did during the colder winter months.

It’s okay, there’s no need to feel guilty about it! She’s Fit has great facilities but we know a change of pace is sometimes needed to keep up your fitness momentum. There is nothing wrong with mixing it up and working out outside the gym, especially during those balmy summer months.

In a city that has one of the most moderate climates year round, not too mention some of the most pristine natural beauty in the world, why not take advantage of our prime location? With ocean and mountains surrounding us, the options are vast and unlimited when it comes to what you can do outside for a workout. Check out our picks for the top outdoor activities that you can do to have fun and blast calories this summer:

1. Hiking

Vancouver and the Lower Mainland is well known for its diverse range of beautiful hiking trails, from scenic day hikes to advanced multi-day treks. Scattered all around the region, from the North Shore to Whistler Mountain, there’s a perfect hiking trail for everyone. Hiking is one of the most popular outdoor activities for Vancouverites and it’s not hard to see why: a person burns around 430 calories per one hour hike, making hiking a fun physical challenge you can do solo or with friends.

The Lynn Loop by the North Shore is a great beginner’s option while the Grouse Grind up Grouse Mountain is perfect for the seasoned hiker looking for a physical challenge. Check out Vancouver Trails for further info about the best trails in the Vancouver region.

Paddle Boarding

2. Stand Up Paddle Boarding

It may look fun and easy, but stand up paddle boarding actually makes for one tough full body workout! Requiring a strong core, a stand up paddleboarding workout is a fine combination of strength, balance and endurance. There are many types of stand up paddleboarding, from racing and touring, to yoga and casual paddleboarding.

Because of its high physical demands, one hour of casual stand up paddleboarding can burn up to 430 calories (twice the amount of calories you would burn on a light walk!) For an exciting change of pace,  try stand up paddleboarding for yourself at any of Vancouver’s top SUP schools.

3. Biking

Vancouver is a bike friendly city, offering separate lanes for cyclists all across town. There are many easy routes in the metropolitan area, with the Seawall that wraps around False Creek and circles Stanley Park being the most notable bike route in the city.

For a longer ride, the Central Valley Greenway is another fantastic option, taking cyclists on a 24 km trek from Science World all the way to New Westminster Quay.

While the amount of calories burned biking depends on a number of factors (weight, terrain, speed) according to Livestrong, a 150 pound individual traveling 12-14 mph can burn 198 calories in 20 minutes. Not too shabby for a scenic ride around the banks of Vancouver!


4. Kayaking

Kayaking is a fantastic way to explore Vancouver’s pristine outdoor beauty while also getting in a proper workout. To put it into perspective, for a 125 pound person, an hour of intermediate kayaking can burn 283 calories and works several major muscle groups throughout your body. It also helps improve your body’s heart health, endurance and cholesterol levels, as well as lower blood pressure and strengthen the lungs.

Lucky for us, there are plenty of opportunities for kayaking in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland! For a world class view, Ecomarine offers great kayak and canoe rentals in English Bay and False Creek, allowing you to take in the city’s stunning skyline, while Deer Lake Boat Rentals in Burnaby lets you explore the region’s unique wildlife on Deer Lake.

5. Yoga

We all know yoga is great for improving muscle strength and tone, but did you know it’s also an amazing calorie blaster? According to Health Status’s calorie calculator, one hour of yoga can rack up quite the calorie count! It all depends on the type of yoga.

A 150 pound individual will burn 189 calories with Hatha Yoga, 351 calories with Ashtanga Yoga, 477 calories with Bikram and a staggering 594 calories with Vinyasa.

We’re lucky enough to live in a city that allows us to practise yoga outside, with a slew of outdoor yoga classes about to be launched for the summer. From a daily free yoga class on Kitsilano Beach Park to a special one time yoga on the pier class in Port Moody in July, take advantage of the beautiful weather and hit up the best outdoor yoga events in the city this summer!