There's little I love more than a good run or high-energy kickboxing class where you leave completely covered and dripping with sweat. There's something about being drenched that signals—to me—that I've had a really good workout, really given it my all. But I'm not normal. I know that for most people, especially those who don't like exercise, sweating has a big ick factor to it.|
Sweat can get in your eyes, it can make you smelly, and it can really mess up your hair. And let's face it: Some people hate sweating so much that they don't like to work out But don't throw out your workout with the sweat puddles. Even though heart-pumping and sweat-inducing high-intensity exercise is often touted for its health and weight-loss benefits, low-intensity workouts have their perks, too. In fact, a three-month study from the University of Queensland in Australia found that subjects who did Tai Chi (a graceful mix of gentle exercise, stretching and meditation) regularly for 90 days—without any high-intensity activity—had decreases in blood pressure, blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. Not to mention that they also reported lower levels of depression, slept better, had more energy, and dealt with stress more easily.
Oftentimes lower-intensity exercise can be more enjoyable than more intense forms of exercise because it's more comfortable. We all know that exercise that is more comfortable and enjoyable—not some sweaty form of torture—is exercise that you want to do for the long haul. And any exercise you do regularly is good exercise! Below are eight no-sweat, lower-intensity workouts. If you're someone who avoids exercising because you think you'll have to shower afterwards or will spend the time gasping for air, think again. These eight activities are perfectly stress- and sweat-free!
Pilates exercises, which are based on dance, yoga, gymnastics and calisthenics, are designed to strength the core, lengthen the body and improve posture (think of the body of a ballerina). This form of exercise involves little to no cardio work, but instead builds on moves that target the abs, back and overall core strength. With Pilates you won't be sweating per se, but you'll definitely be feeling the burn with moves like The Hundred, Double Leg Stretch and other challenging exercises that mix focused breathing with serious core work.
Get started tip: Check out Coach Nicole's 12-minute Pilates Video!Water Workouts
If you hate to sweat, working out in the water is awesome because even if you are sweating, you won't even know it! Swimming can be an incredibly relaxing workout that works your whole body with little impact on your joints, so it's perfect for people with significant amounts of weight to lose or individuals with injuries or arthritis. Whether it's lap swimming, a water aerobics class or channeling your inner kid and just doggie paddling down and back at the pool, jumping in the water can do wonders for your health.