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Summer workout at the cottage
By:  Kyla Vanderzwet   (2011/08/10)



One of my favourite summertime events is the annual family trip to our grandparents’ cottage, which is near Bracebridge. If you’ve visited Muskoka before, you will probably agree that it is easy to do lots of cardiovascular training there. It’s a treat to swim, paddle, cycle, run, and roller ski amidst the inspirational scenery. On the other hand, I find that the motivation to do strength exercises does not come as easily, due to the lack of fancy gym equipment to use. This small pitfall is easily overcome with a bit of imagination though. Here are some of the things you can do to get jacked without a weight room...


-Horizontal pull-ups with a partner and a paddle. If the person standing up is really strong, he/she can also do an upright row using this set-up.


-Upright row using a paddle and buckets of water/rocks for resistance. 

-Wouldn’t want to forget pull-ups!  If you can find something to hang from, you can do forward and reverse grip pull-ups.


-The partner paddle battle – assume a sumo wrestler position and try to push your partner away from you (and potentially into the lake).

-(Attempted) squats on an inner tube for improving balance. Needless to say, this does not always end well.


-Knee tucks from a plank position, with your feet on a floating inner tube and your forearms on the dock/land.


-Similarly, you can do push-ups with your feet on a floating inner tube and your hands on the dock/land.  Using the inner tube adds a component of balance to the exercise.

-And of course, there is always wood chopping. Not only does this simulate double-poling very well, it is also appreciated by the cottage owner (especially if you stack the wood too!).

Happy summer training!

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