Please help me plan a fitness adventure!
November 21, 2011 11:59 AM   Subscribe

You helped me 'dedicate a year to spoiling my physical body' - now please help me plan four months of "fitness adventure" while not working!

You gave me a lot of great ideas on how to spoil my physical self- thanks, I really appreciated them!

I made some progress- but I want more. I'm hoping to go to grad school in the fall, and have arranged to have 6 months off beforehand to just focus on my physical self. No work, no study, virtually no other distractions.

I have a budget of $5000 for this, excluding airfare (I'm hoping to have enough miles saved to manage tickets through that). I will probably use 2 months of the time to spend with family and to settle into whatever city I'll go to school in, so really I'm talking about 4 months but extendable if there are great opportunities that require 6 month commitments.

I've found some ideas by looking up 'gap year' programs, and one option I'm considering is this boot camp in Thailand. and volunteering in a hawaii retreat center in exchange for being able to benefit from the center's programs

please help me find other great ways to spend several months getting in great physical shape, especially bearing in mind the budget constraints considering there are plenty of options that would be too expensive to do long-term

yoga places could be cool but I fear the more affordable places may be quite religious and I'm not sure I could handle anything too intense in that regard

intensive long-term dance ideas would also be interesting

I'm very open minded to considering various types of fitness-orientated activity.

I should be spending several hours a day 5-6 days a week doing something physical. Please give me your suggestions! Thanks :)
posted by saraindc to Health & Fitness (7 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: You could have a look for something like this. In the UK we have a few circus schools where you could combine evening and weekend courses with use of their practice space to work on all manner of gymnastic and aerial arts. I don't suggest coming to the UK, but there might be something similar nearer to you.
posted by emilyw at 12:22 PM on November 21, 2011

posted by doctord at 12:36 PM on November 21, 2011

Strength training should be a big part of this. You could make a good amount of progress given four months, a gym with access to free-weights, and a decent strength-centric trainer... and once you learn the basic compound lifts, they'll be easy to stick with anywhere you can find a gym, including during grad school. Add in some mobility and stamina work (gymnastics is a great idea!) and you've just about got it.
posted by vorfeed at 12:50 PM on November 21, 2011

A friend of mine is really into Muay Thai boxing and annually goes to training camp in Thailand. She is super fit and could probably kick my head clean off if she felt like it. She does all-inclusive camps so it's very affordable to stay for 2 - 3 months at a time.
posted by Wantok at 2:15 PM on November 21, 2011


Here are some things I've been vaguely thinking about...

Training to spar in, say, kickboxing, MMA, or Jiu Jitsu. Depending on your current fitness, you could hit a beginner's ring in 6 months. And $5000 would have you living comfortably in Brazil, home of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Getting a personal trainer certification. I mean, people get amateur pilot's licenses. Why not have the answers to all those questions you have about your body.

Get coaching on a specific sport.
With that kind of time and money, you may be able to, for short periods, work with the best people or in the best gyms.

Thailand is a rock-climbing mecca and you will get ripped doing that, so maybe find a camp for that?
posted by jander03 at 2:22 PM on November 21, 2011

Best answer: If I were you, and I am part of the year, I would get a touring bike, pick a starting point and perhaps a destination and tour your bicycle there.

It's really f'n hard to be unhealthy while riding a fully loaded bicycle 50-100 miles a day.

Plus, every day you never know what's going to happen. Or what you'll see. Or where you'll sleep. Or who you'll meet.

Or go to New Zealand. There's a million things to do there. Just make sure not to die. That's easy to do. Really. Remember don't be in a, "Vacation Mode"
posted by alex_skazat at 4:09 PM on November 21, 2011

Best answer: You could try taking a long distance trek like the pilgrimage of the Santiago de Compostela which will take you through France and Spain. It would take approximately 35 days if you walk 25km a day.

Also, trekking/mountain biking in Iceland would be amazing.
posted by costanza at 5:41 PM on November 21, 2011

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