Working out shouldn’t have to feel like a chore. I am a firm believer that if you’re not getting an emotional boost from exercising, or if it leaves you feeling tired and blah rather than proud and pumped, you’re doing something wrong.  As a kid, I could spend hours (yes, hours) in the ocean or running around with my friends in the school yard. I was always on. Now that I’m older, I have to make a conscious effort to get a decent amount of exercise in. I wondered if it could be as fun and effortless as it was when I was younger. Spoiler alert: it totally can! I did a little research and found some workouts that won’t feel like chores, and will put you in touch with your inner child. 

I’m constantly dreaming of one day becoming rich and famous, owning a big house with a sprawling backyard and a giant trampoline. Every morning, I would wake up, have a quick breakfast and get my daily workout by jumping and doing flips on my lovely bouncy thing. Until then, Body By Simone has an awesome class they call “Tramp Cardio,” which includes “intervals of high energy bouncing on a spring free rebounder, followed by intermittent full body strengthening.” 


I totally didn’t know that special weighted work-out hula hoops existed until I came across them while online shopping for a regular one (because I’m a weirdo). All of a sudden, my prayers had been answered.  These special hoops tend to fall in the neighborhood of around three pounds, and are a little expensive (they’re usually around $35). But talk about a core workout! And, one you can do super casually at home while watching The Daily Show. 


This one, like the trampoline, is slightly more difficult to execute indoors. I’m talking about jump ropes. These, admittedly, are not a favorite of mine (two left feet), but if they were a favorite of yours as a kid, rejoice in the knowledge that jumping rope is one of the best cardio workouts for you. To maximize your jumpercize, check out these different jump rope routines.

One final idea: host regular dance parties with friends! Invite some pals over, crank the tunes and shake your booty till the sun comes up! Wild and embarrassing dancing, provided you don’t get too awkward and pull a muscle, is one of the best things ever. It’s an instant mood-booster, with the added bonus of being an exercise that works different muscles every time (believe me, you’ll be sore in places you didn’t even know existed).

That concludes my brief and hopefully enlightening round-up. You might notice that I’ve excluded bicycling from the list. This is because they have officially and irreversibly infiltrated the mainstream, and spin classes have become a total drag for many (I love them, but whatever).  Are any of you as inspired to grab the water guns and the sidewalk chalk right now? What were your favorite ways to be active as a kid?


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