As we come to the Spring and Summer seasons, many outdoor activities are popping up. Outdoor activities can be great workouts, especially here on Oahu where we have some of the most beautiful hikes and scenery in the world! One of my favorite activities is camping. Honestly, camping is a fun activity throughout the whole year in the beautiful state of Hawaii (just make sure you look out for the storms and hurricane watches). Camping is a great activity for the whole family, and it’s still possible to get some exercise during a relaxing weekend.
This past Kuhio Day weekend my family and I went camping at Kualoa Regional Beach Park. The campgrounds are located on the beach park right across from the island of Mokoli’i, commonly known as Chinaman’s Hat. It is surrounded by amazing views of the ocean and Chinaman’s Hat, as well as the Koolau mountains. It was a beautiful weekend spent with the family with the perfect balance of relaxation as well as fun activities. Although it was time spent away from home, I didn’t let it become an excuse to get out of my routine of exercising.
Setting up camp on Friday was a workout in itself. Loading and unloading all the camp gear I made sure to use proper posture when lifting and carrying loads from the car to camp. Bracing my core throughout the whole process. Side note, I brought a pack n play for my 7 month old which helped a lot to be able to put her down to play on her own while I helped set up (in case you’re bringing babies). Later that night, as dinner was being cooked and the kids were running wild I thought it would be good to get them to wind down. We did some stretching and yoga before laying in the grass to look at stars.
Saturday and Sunday morning, while everyone else was still asleep, the baby and I went for a morning walk around the beach park while I had her in the baby carrier. Being on the east side, we were also able to catch the sunrise. We took in the scenery of the mountains and the ocean. Walking on the sand while holding the baby was a great workout. Cardio while also core bracing, and getting a leg work out from the sand was perfect. I was also able to get walks in when it was time to lull the baby to sleep for the night.
Being on the beach, we could go swimming whenever we wanted to. Swimming is a great cardio and aerobic workout to do not only because it is low impact, but it is fun and feels great to stay cool on a hot Hawaiian day. You can do so much at the beach.
Depending on your preferences you can free swim, water jogging, thread water, or just jumping up and down splashing with your kids. There are also countless water activities such as paddle boarding, boogie boarding, and kayaking, just to name a few. I’d say these are the best activities because you don’t realize you are working out because of all the fun you’ll have.
All the other workouts that I did were short 10-15 minutes where I could find time between all the fun family activities. For example, while waiting for dinner to finish being prepared I had time to do a short workout that consisted of squats (holding the 18 lb. baby), split and curtsy lunges, pushups, and planks. I could fit 3 sets of 15 of each and felt great about getting something in. Anything is better than nothing at all.
It was a great weekend showing my 7 month old the beauty of island camping as well as spending time and catching up with family. It was full of fun and relaxation and I felt great about still being able to keep up with my exercises. Working in the PT/Rehab department at Oahu Spine & Rehab in Kailua, I know that it’s important to stay active and keep on routine. One of the most important thing for our patients to do is their at-home exercises, which is why I didn’t let my camping trip get in the way of my routine.
Here at OSR we are dedicated to helping the people of Oahu live pain free by using our integrated health center approach to healing chronic pain. If you are suffering from pain, give us a call today at 488-5555 to set up your appointment!
To reserve and purchase camping permits for Hawai’i State Parks go to
A good read on the Hawaiian legend of Chinaman’s Hat.