What is coming down the pike for fitness trends in 2013? Quite a bit actually. One of the best things I’ve seen about fitness over the years is how much it has expanded. The idea of going to the gym and slaving away on a treadmill are over … if you want it to be. Every way that you can find to move counts as exercise and the industry as a whole is really embracing it.
Here are my top 5 fitness trends:
High Intensity Workouts
From CrossFit power workouts to my HIIT workout, there are a lot of short-burst routines out there. And the research is backing up this new trend with several studies.
Workout periods last between four and ten minutes. You switch between moving as quickly and explosively as possible to super-brief periods of rest. If you’re close to puking, then you’re probably working hard enough. Yes, they’re uncomfortable, but for some they’re quite addictive, and you’ll see the pounds melt away pretty quickly.
Online Fitness Communities
This trend has been around for a few years now, but I see it growing even bigger in 2013. There are so many ways to connect, from private communities with hundreds of thousands of members (such as Weight Watchers forum boards) to small, closed Facebook groups featuring just a few friends encouraging each other along informally.
You can keep track of your workouts publicly at places like Fitocracy, or even make a bet with friends and strangers to lose weight at places like DietBet.com. With a few clicks of your mouse, you can find a community that works for you, and studies show that online support communities can help you stay on track.
Higher Fitness Standards
This might be wishful thinking on my part, but I do think people are becoming more discerning about what fitness trainers/celebrities they’d like to work with or aspire to. Yes, if you’ve been on a TV show, your fitness DVD will sell like hot cakes, but I see plenty of people looking for a good workout … period … and whomever delivers it, they’ll stick with. If you’d like to see who your peers like, check out VideoFitness.com and their forums; tons of great information there.
My rule of thumb here: look for a person’s credentials if you’re thinking about working with them. If they’re not published somewhere, then they’re probably not that good. I’m talking to you Jillian.
Another big fitness trend is taking it outside. Hiking, running, walking, pickup basketball, Frisbee in the park, hooping. There are so many ways to get outside and move and studies show that we a) workout longer when outside, and b) have a better time doing it. You’ll come back sweaty and refreshed both physically and mentally. When in doubt, throw on the sneakers and head out the door. You’ll always be glad you did.
Fitness and Play
My friend, MizFitOnline, likes to call them playouts instead of workouts, and this category agrees wholeheartedly. How can you turn fitness into fun?
One way is by trying something a little bit out there. Maybe it’s as simple as hanging from the monkey bars with your kid, or maybe it’s an aerial yoga, or a pole-dancing class. Perhaps you’ll join a Parkour class in your neighborhood park. There are a lot of options for getting fit in a way that doesn’t feel like exercise at all.
I love and live in the world of Pilates, but I don’t limit myself to it, and I encourage my clients to do a wide variety of movement. Mix in any and everything that looks challenging and fun and you’ll likely be on the right track. How about you? What fitness trend do YOU want to try for 2013?
photo credit: GeishaBoy500