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comfort zone

    5 Ways to Step Outside of Your Exercise Comfort Zone

    January 30, 2018

    There are so many new fitness trends out there that it’s hard to keep track of them all. But a new workout, or even trying an activity with friends, can be a great way to reset your mindset on what constitutes working out, and can help you step outside of what might be a monotonous routine. I love trying new workouts, and as a fitness instructor, fitness conventions and demos can make them easily accessible. But as a consumer of fitness, you have a ton of options too!

    So, first things first, channel your inner Cirque du Soleil artist and try out…

    1. Aerial Silks

    Aerial silks can be a fun girl’s night out, especially as a lot of companies tend to offer them as a special event with chocolate and wine after you test gravity. But don’t let this class fool you; it’s a HARD workout! I did this with a bunch of girlfriends and we were shocked at the upper body and core strength needed. We also gave our core an extra workout from laughing so hard that we almost fell out of the silk ropes. But that’s a different story. If you enjoy your night out, this is a legit workout with regular classes. Facilities are popping up all over, and offer weekly classes to build your skills or pop-in class opportunities.


    2. Pound Fitness

    You may have heard of Pound Fitness, or seen the video clips in your newsfeed as you scroll through Facebook. It’s essentially a workout class that uses music, drumsticks, and rhythm to bring a whole new level fun into your work out. A lot of fitness studios are starting to offer this regularly. I know in Raleigh, you can find it at Ladies Fitness and Wellness. A quick Google search will tell you if it’s being offered near you. Get ready to rock!

    3. Standup Paddle Boarding

    This is one of my favorite activities to do when the weather warms up in the Triangle area, but you don’t have to be by a lake or the ocean to take part in SUP Fitness. Many pools will also offer SUP yoga classes where you flow through moves while balancing on a standup paddle board. It can be surprisingly hard and a ton of fun. Don’t be afraid to fall in, everyone does it!
    If you happen to be by large bodies of water, check to see if they offer classes, or if your local REI or Parks and Rec catalog might have introductory lessons. There is also a huge difference between paddling on the lake versus the ocean so if you’ve tried one, make sure you try the other. It’s a fantastic full-body workout and you get the bonus of getting outside and enjoying the calm of the water!


    4. Trampolining

    Ok, I’ll admit that I haven’t tried this yet, but I do see it constantly offered on Groupon and my girlfriends always say that we’re going to try it. Essentially, the same trampoline facilities where you would take your kids for an afternoon of fun often offer adult fitness classes. It sounds like it would be an awesome workout and one of those activities that looks easy… and then you try it and five minutes in really ‘this is gonna be tough.’ Even more reason to give it a go!

    5. Rock Climbing

    An oldie, but goodie. Indoor rock climbing gyms seem to follow me wherever I go and it’s another fun workout to do with a friend or a group. Climbing gyms always offer introductory classes and even if you’re scared of heights, challenging yourself each time to get a little higher can be an exhilarating experience. And your arms will be like jello by the end of the session. The thing I love about rock climbing, is it makes me challenge myself and my fear of heights, and the next day my whole body aches… reminding me what an incredible full body workout it is. While your arms may hurt in the moment, you have to use so much leg and core strength to get yourself to the top of each wall.


    So there you have five fun ideas of how to mix up your workout routine! Now, you don’t have to do something totally crazy to step outside of your comfort zone, but these are just some different ways to approach your regular fitness day-to-day. Many gyms may also offer ‘sampler’ days where you can try out various classes that you may never have considered. Be sure to ask your gym management, or if you are looking into new gyms, see what variety of classes they might offer.

    When shopping for your activity, don’t forget to check sites like who often have promotions for a lot of completely random (ok, saying it like it is, because some of these activities really are random) classes. It’s a great place to start if you’re even looking for ideas of what is local to you. And if you’re using Groupon, you better have your eBates on because you get cash back from your online (or even cell phone) purchases, and Groupon is usually one of their big cash back partners. It’s legit, I promise. Ebates gets a commission from clicks to shopping sites through them. They share that commission with members of their program. I’ve been using eBates for years and I love getting my quarterly bonus check from them.

    What are some unique workouts that you’ve tried or that you want to try?

    Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links.