Whether you’ve been on the road in your RV, stuck inside during a snowstorm or have just eaten your way through a gingerbread castle and eggnog moat, you’re not alone if you didn’t accomplish your diet or exercise goals in December. But now that it’s January, it’s time to get active and get back on track! Lucky for you, it’s easy to be outside in Desert Hot Springs, one of the most temperate winter weather destinations in North America. Use the eternal sunshine and breezy valley winds as an incentive to kick your fitness program into gear. Here are five ways to break the cycle and get physical this season:
Hit the links. Palm Springs and its surrounding environs have limitless golf courses perfect for leisurely practice or competitive games. Whether you’re an experienced pro or a total novice, you’ll find the perfect links to practice your swing this season. And while a hearty swing can keep your heart healthy and your arms warm, it’s the walking from hole to hole that provides most of the sport’s fitness component. So skip the cart and carry those clubs for maximum impact. Walking through the nine-hole course and back is like taking a one-mile walk!
Strengthen your core. Yoga is a great way to get some gentle exercise and stay in shape at the same time. If the dance-like, flowing moves are a little intimidating, try a beginner’s class at Yoga Central in La Quinta. The all-levels studio has everything from gentle vinyasa to brand new “strength and balance for seniors” classes to ensure no one gets left behind. Stay closer to home by joining Jan Van Horn at Ferris Hall in Caliente Springs on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 8:00 am for a group class. At Sky Valley, meet on Monday and Thursday at 11:00 am for gentle yoga on the lawn at the West Park clubhouse. Join in for a sun salutation in the sands of the desert!
Compete for the pickleball title. Play the sport that’s taking the world by storm and get in shape at the same time. Pickleball combines elements of tennis, racquetball and ping-pong to create a fun and challenging game for people of all ages. Using a small paddle and a plastic ball with holes, pickleball has a quicker learning curve than ping-pong or tennis and incorporates exercise with less of the intensity of tennis. It’s perfect for casual athletes who want to get a workout without getting burned out. Did you know that Sky Valley Resorts have a robust pickleball program? Vigorous play lasts through the daylight hours, every day. Lessons at the Caliente courts are 8:00 - 9:30 am on Mondays and Thursdays.
Cycle the short stops. Used to buzzing around the park in a cart or car? Drop the third and fourth wheel and use human power to pedal your way to the pools, the pinochle game or the picture show. Spending 30 to 40 minutes on a bicycle every day will shed calories and tone your legs. Believe it or not, regular cycling also strengthens your arms and core, too, so it’s a full body workout. If you start now, you can build your way to the Tour de Palm Springs on January 21, where 10-, 25-, 50- and 100- mile courses take cyclists across the desert raising money for charity. Sign up online.
Swim your way to fitness. Many residents and visitors in Desert Hot Springs come for the therapeutic mineral hot springs. And while sitting in a whirlpool hot tub chatting with your neighbors is a great activity at any time of day, the larger swimming pools provide a great place for low-impact, high-energy exercise. Spending just 30 minutes swimming laps every morning can burn 250 - 300 calories and start your day right. Utilize interval training, which alternates intense, quick laps with gentler, cool-down laps, for the most fitness impact.
Whether you incorporate many of the active components of life in Sky Valley Resorts into your wintertime hiatus or just stick to one outdoor activity, you’ll love the way that resort amenities fill your friendship circle and trim your waistline.