February is American Heart Month, a time when many people start to take stock of their cardiovascular health. For the expat abroad, there are plenty of ways to stay physically active, getting that heart rate up along the way.
Before I Came to Mexico, I Was a Bit of a Gym Rat
Dance classes, yoga, swimming, lifting weights; I did it all. It was the only way I could find the strength to muster through those cold Chicago winters!
Now that’s I’m living la vida loca in Mexico, I know it’s important to keep at it.
To help encourage the masses to enjoy a little more physical activity, this blog will outline some common workout options both expats and locals enjoy in Puerto Vallarta, Riviera Nayarit, and beyond!
Long Walks on the Beach Make for Great Expat Exercise
The truth is that living abroad doesn’t automatically absolve a person of stress.
There is plenty of expat stress to go around– language barriers, cultural misunderstandings, long lines, and bureaucratic nightmares can make life tough to navigate! Exercise helps.
A long walk on the beach could be just what the doctor ordered! Get a few extra steps in with a stroll on the beach. It can be quite meditative, offering a glance at all that nature has to offer.
Local Parks Score High Marks in Mexico
Many small towns boast a neighborly plaza where people congregate to socialize; nearby one might see a basketball court, workout equipment, a soccer field, or a walking track.
When you find something you like, don’t be afraid to take advantage of it. If you’re into pickup games, ask to join one! How’s that for a little local cultural immersion?
Outside of major cities, the parks systems in Mexico are far less developed than in many United States communities.
The cultural focus on public recreation is simply different. Luckily, however, improved parks seem to pop up in some places.
Private Gyms and Clubs Might Be within Your Budget
You might consider golf, sailing, hiking, surfing, or working out at a fitness club. Dance studios offer jazz, ballet, and Zumba. Boxing clubs and martial arts classes are also on the menu in many towns. These are premium services in Mexico, so be sure to shop around.
For those who like towel service and rows of treadmills, rest assured that fitness clubs are in operation. Mexican facilities can be pricier than some of their counterparts north of the border. Be aware, however, many gyms are on the grittier side.
Expats Shouldn’t Rule Out Working Out at Home
If all else fails, you can work up a sweat in your living room! YouTube lists many fitness videos that can give expats a good workout (and in their native language). My favorite is this barre workout.
There is hardly a bad time to incorporate a little more fitness into your life. Remember, always check with a medical professional before starting a fitness routine.
Once you’re sure you’re good to go, get moving! Let me know what types of physical activities and sports you keep up (or will keep up) as an expat!
by: Dale Hanstad