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Burn More Outdoors (Part 2) : Weighted vest, Skipping rope, Fitdeck & Reaction ball

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Weighted vest

Great for: weight loss

Description: Weighted vest

Want to add another dimension to your training session? Wearing a weighted vest during exercise will make your session significantly harder because of the added resistance and weight. It’s also a great technique to use to help you realize how much harder your sessions would be if you were to gain a few extra pounds. The added intensity will help to build your core strength and improve your posture, too.

“Weighted vests are great for weight loss and improving your speed and performance,” says Ingleby. “Just make sure you get the right size, so it’s comfortable to exercise with, and start using it for short periods of time so you can get used to it. You’ll also need to keep your posture strong while using it. Some people are inclined to lean too far forwards, which could cause injuries.”

Try this: An adjustable vest, that will add anything up to 10kg to your weight, while fitting comfortably around your body. From $200; amazon.com

Skipping rope

Great for: burning calories

Description: Skipping rope

Skipping is not just for kids. In fact, it’s one of the most complete, overall workouts, and burns more calories per minute than most other forms of exercise, including running: 10 minutes of skipping has the same cardio benefits as a 30-minute run. It’s also cheap and effective, and can be done just about anywhere, while boosting your metabolic rate and all-over muscle tone.

“Skipping is great fun, and can even be done with a friend,” says Ingleby. “Just get your partner to skip for 60 seconds, while you do a strength exercise such as squats or tricep dips. Swap over every 60 seconds and continue until you’ve done six or seven resistance moves. Just remember to keep your posture strong and wear a supportive sports bra”

Try this: This adjustable rope counts the number of jump you’ve completed, as well as the calories you’ve burned during each session. $23; firebox.com. You can also use a weighted rope for an extra challenge. $31; store.lonsdale.com

Fitdeck

Great for: beginners

Description: Fitdeck

Designed by US Navy SEAL Phil Black, FitDeck is a set of 56 cards with more than 50 different exercises, stretches and moves, complete with instructions and guidelines. To use them, pull out a card, follow the instructions, then pull out the next and continue for your desired workout time. They are all bodyweight exercises, so no kit is required. And you can also buy other packs specific to your goals or interests, for example, stretching. TRX, kettlebell and pre- and post-natal, which is great if you need some added inspiration.

“FitDeck will give you loads of different combinations of exercises that work different muscles groups. It’s great for beginners because the cards tell you what to do,” says Ingleby. The cards will certainly get you stronger and fitter, especially if you combine them with some aerobic training and mix up the exercises each week.”

Try this: There is a huge variety to choose from. The Bodyweight pack includes exercises for the upper, middle and lower body, along with whole-body moves. $26: fitdeck.eu

Reaction ball

Great for: speed and mental focus

Description: Reaction ball

This brightly coloured rubber ball has four different bumps on it, and is designed to improve your reaction time and hand to eye co-ordination. You throw it, watch it land, then unpredictably bounce. Your goal is to respond to the bounce and catch it. The ball is small enough to pack for a holiday or pop in your pocket until you reach an open space to play. It’s amazing how a few minutes of playing with this will increase your heart rate and hand-eye co-ordination. It’s great for group training and playing with the kids, too.

“The ball is ideal for jazzing up your usual cardio sessions,” says Ingleby. “Not only will it force your body to move in a different way, while challenging new muscles, it’s also great for racquet sport lovers, who need to improve their reaction time. It’s a cheap piece of kit that has many benefits!”

Try this: You can use the ball on a firm surface or wall. The small Reaction ball (7cm) costs $7, while the larger ball (10cm) costs $10: fitness-mad.com

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