If you weren’t fans of the outdoors before, it’s safe to assume that as of March 2020, you came to value it like never before. When we suddenly found ourselves unable to go outdoors or venture outside of a five kilometre radius of our homes, the allure of nature never felt stronger. And as many of us have come to learn as a result, nature and our own wellbeing is inextricably linked. Few things have the power to awaken the senses and calm the mind quite like exercise and the outdoors, and it’s something 35-year-old singer Miguel knows all too well.
In a recent interview with Men’s Health, Miguel spoke about the importance of his fitness routine for his mental health and surprised some fans by revealing that his go-to workout isn’t one that sees him lifting heavy weights or busting a sweat on the rowing machine, but rather that he prefers to step out in nature with long trails and modified exercise routines. Calling it his back-to-nature training plan, the singer explained, “It’s just about getting your body engaged, and hopefully moving on to the rest of your day.”
Just like Lenny Kravitz who uses the outdoors as his gym, Miguel also looks to the natural elements when establishing exercises. It means he’ll find a tree branch to do pull-ups, or a table to perform some incline push-ups. But even though he has to work harder to modify exercises and also competes with the unrelenting sun and heat, he believes the workout has a profound effect on his mental state and contributes to a feeling of inner peace. “It’s a crazy world out there, got a lot of chaos in the mind,” he told the publication. “And, the workout has been [the] number one defence for all that stuff. You know, I got there, that’s my place where I can just let it all go. All my frustration, all that bad shit we all deal with on a day-to-day, so I can do what I’m here to do.”
Miguel’s workout routine is done on the go. Occasionally he might wear a weighted vest, but not all the time and the important thing is that while he does use a set routine, he’s not rigid about it and can adapt. “I don’t bring much,” says Miguel, “It’s really just about creating a workout on the fly, you know? We get to create.”
Another key feature is that after the workout, Miguel practices guided meditation to cool down and relax. “Meditation has been a daily practice,” he explains. “After a workout, you’re real clear. You just ease right into it, and when you’re done, you’re completely able to sort of jiu-jitsu any bullshit through the day.”
If you’re keen to get outdoors or carve out some time to cultivate inner peace of your own, read on.
Miguel’s outdoor HIIT workout routine
Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, then rest for 10 seconds. Repeat as desired for up to 3 total rounds.