Living near the ocean sounds like a dream come true for many people. And it truly is. But even though living by the beach is amazing, it can be easy to get stuck in the same rut of beach activities. Thinking about how to reach out of your comfort zone when it comes to going to the beach will leave you more fulfilled.
Get Your Vitamin D
One of the best ways to spend your time near the ocean is soaking up the delicious rays of the sun. Getting sunlight is so important for your health for a variety of reasons. First of all, getting good sunlight has been shown to help with mood and with mental disorders like anxiety and depression. Vitamin D is also required to healthily monitor and regulate your immune system; if you stay cooped up inside for too long, your body may have difficulty responding to different sicknesses that you encounter.
But while getting vitamin D is essential, be sure to do so healthily. Failing to protect your skin when you are outside or trying to tan without sunscreen could result in major problems later on in addition to a nasty sunburn in the short-term. There are multiple precautions you can take to ensure that you don’t suffer these consequences.
First, start by applying an SPF of at least 30. 30 SPF blocks out the majority of the harmful rays that can cause cancer and other skin problems. Then be sure to wear a shirt, hat, and sunglasses when outside. Sunglasses are especially important to protect your eyes which can be easily burned and tired out from excessive sun exposure. Taking these precautions will help you enjoy sunshine while staying safe.
Do Some Yoga
Doing yoga has incredible benefits. But it is especially fun and fulfilling on the beach. The best time to go and do yoga is in the morning—if you can get there during the sunrise, you’ll be in for a spectacular experience. Doing yoga on the beach in the morning is not only a good practice for better personal wellness, but it also will help you enhance your yoga performance.
Yoga is more than simple positions and meditation. Yoga originated as a Hindu practice in order to help individuals achieve physical, spiritual, and mental balance. Performing the various moves in sync with the proper mental state allows you to better master yourself. Doing these exercises in a beautiful peaceful place can help you better embrace the true purpose of yoga.
When it comes to doing yoga on the beach, there are a few practical things you should think about. Figure out if you enjoy doing yoga barefoot in sand. Though doing yoga poses in this way might mean getting more sand in your clothes and hair, it is also a unique and positive experience to feel the cold sand on your hands and toes.
However, if you don’t enjoy that particular sensation, you’ll want to invest in a large sand-repellent towel to place under your yoga mat to help you stay sand free. You may also want a harder mat to place under your yoga mat if you want a more sturdy surface beneath you.
Watch the Sunset
Tropical island ocean sunsets are something extra special. Dedicating some time a couple nights a week to watch the sunset will be a beautiful experience and will help you find more peace in the midst of a busy day-to-day life. Figure out the best places to watch the sunset in your particular area.
You might be surprised by what you find—try various locations from higher up plateaus to benches right next to the sand. Trying out these different places will be fun and will hopefully lead to you finding a place that can be your unique spot for sunset watching.
Go Into the Ocean
Getting into the ocean is a must-do if you live anywhere near a beach. And while this may seem like a given at first, there are various things you can do to switch up your time in the water. First off, try to make swimming in the ocean part of your workout regimen. Swimming is already an incredibly beneficial exercise for your heart health but swimming in the ocean gives you an even better workout. Swimming up against waves forces your body to work harder which pushes your heart to better self-regulate.
Additionally, swimming in ocean water enables you to absorb many of the vitamins and minerals that are in the water. For example, the ocean is rich in a variety of minerals that are good for your skin like magnesium, sodium, and calcium. Spending time each day in the water helps your skin absorb these minerals that will give it a smoother stronger feel.
In addition to doing basic swimming, try to also explore the ocean in a canoe. Be careful to go at the right times of the year and day because you don’t want to get caught in a current that takes you out farther than you should go. But when you are able to go out at a good time, you’ll be amazed by the beautiful views of the shore that you’ll get canoeing. Additionally, canoeing or other sports like paddle boarding will give you a great workout for your arms and will help you better develop stability.
Take Advantage of Seafood
Being near the beach means having access to fresh-caught fish—something that makes an incredible difference when you eat foods like sushi. Take advantage of the incredible seafood options around you and branch out to try new foods. Be willing to try seafood that you may have never tried before or might be initially reticent to try.
You won’t regret reaching out of your comfort one and you may discover dishes that become new favorites. When it comes to trying seafood, don’t limit yourself to local restaurants. Find markets where you can buy fresh caught fish yourself to cook at home. If you already love shrimp or tilapia, cooking it freshly caught will be quite the experience.
Run on the Beach
Running on the beach is incredible exercise and can be incredibly enjoyable. If you are already an avid runner, prepare yourself for a different kind of run. If you choose to run on the sand, it’s best to go barefoot or to wear minimal foot gloves. Running with your normal running shoes on sand will mean getting sand in your socks and shoes that could lead to painful rubbing and irritation.
You should also be prepared to run fewer miles than you would on normal ground because your feet will sink back into the sand with every step you take. This type of running will also likely require you to engage your arch even more as you pull your foot into each step.
But because this type of running is more difficult, you’ll get an even better workout running the same number of miles as you would running on concrete. Even more than the physical benefits of running on the beach, the scenery and the sound of crashing waves always makes for an extraordinary experience.
Surfing is perhaps one of the most classic beach activities that you can try. But even though surfing can be difficult to master, it is absolutely one of the best ways to really get to know and enjoy the ocean. If you are a beginner to surfing, be sure to have at least a couple lessons with an expert surfer.
As you look for someone to give you lessons, look for someone who has experience teaching kids if you want your children to learn or experience with adults if you yourself are trying to learn. The teaching styles vary by age group so it might be harder for you to learn from someone who mainly teaches kids all day.
As you start to get better at surfing, make sure to spend time practicing as frequently as possible. Spending an hour a day in the water will not only help you seriously improve your skills, but it also has great health benefits. Surfing itself requires you to build strong muscles and lung endurance from swimming and paddling. And being outside for a decent amount of time each day has been shown to improve mood among other things.
Snorkel or Scuba Dive
When you have a lot of time to spend at the beach, be sure that you take the time to snorkel or scuba dive. Snorkeling gear can be incredibly cheap if you just get a basic set of goggles and breathing tube. Finding the best spots to snorkel can sometimes be tricky, but that’s the fun part.
Explore different beaches and preferably different bays or inlets—trying to snorkel in the open ocean will not only be incredibly difficult, but it could be dangerous. You can easily get lots of saltwater in your tube from crashing waves. And if you are constantly trying to look down, you might get hit against rocks.
Similarly, with scuba diving, be careful which beaches you go to. Be sure to get the proper certification and have the right gear when you dive to ensure that you are safe and prepared. If you are new to snorkeling and scuba diving, you can learn more about scuba certification for beginners.
Going fishing is another great way to take advantage of the beach. And if you are already an avid fisherman, get ready for a new experience and adventure because ocean fishing is very different from freshwater fishing.
For starters, you’ll need to get your fishing license for saltwater fishing. The process for getting this license will vary by state so make sure that you understand your state’s rules. Then you’ll want to make sure that you go at the right time of year. For example, if you are hoping to catch Alaskan salmon, be sure to visit between May and October as that is the peak season for the salmon run.
Once you’ve identified the right time to venture out on your fishing expedition, bring the right gear. Having the right gear for the type of fish you’re fishing and for saltwater fishing more generally will ensure you have a successful voyage.
Enjoy Seaside Shops
Regardless of what beach you live near, most beach towns have beautiful quaint seaside shops to take advantage of. These lovely little shops tend to differ from the larger types of stores that are found in the city center and are usually run by locals. Get to know the locals, buy clothing from handmade vendors, and try out the various foods that are sold.
Usually, you’ll be able to find incredibly delicious locally caught fish and sushi or delicious smoothie places with home grown fruit. These kinds of experiences allow you to really absorb the beach culture wherever you are. When you take the time to really explore the local areas and stores surrounding the beach, you’ll be able to find little places, shakes, or tiny shops that will become some of your favorite places for fun unique gifts.
Embracing the ocean will lead you to enjoy a better quality of life. Taking the time to try out these various activities and find ones you really enjoy will help you better manage normal stress and enjoy the beauty of nature. In the process, you’ll learn to love the majestic ocean that you have access to.
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