Shake up Your Exercise Routine with Your Dog
You might be feeling guilty that you’re working out instead of playing with your dog. A dog needs to spend his pent-up energy by being physically active, such as going for a run in the park.
It’s a fact that your dog needs exercise, and so do you so why not combine the two? Did you know a training partner can boost your overall workout performance and motivate you? A dog can be a great exercising partner, not just another person.
Time to shake things up…
When you are getting bored with your exercise routine, you gradually start losing interest in getting fitter. If that’s the case, perhaps now is the time to change it up completely and start working out with your dog instead. At least you know they’re 100% reliable and will not complain!
In the beginning, you might be a little skeptical about the amount of exercise your dog is getting while you both work out together. Because sometimes your dog might get more exercise than he should which could lead him to fatigue.
Use a dog fitness collar to track workouts
So, a safe way to keep a track of his activity is a fitness collar, and when you get along together as workout partners for a pretty long time, you can switch back to a normal collar, such as a Seresto dog collar.
Workouts for the Duo
As you go through this article you will realise running is not the only exercise you can do with your dog. Most workouts for humans and their canine buddies are based on the concept that incorporates a full body workout for you and obedience training as well as physical activities for your best friend.
I am not talking about walking your dog, because it is just an ordinary exercise for you that won’t build muscles. This new kind of workout is a complete exercise program for a person and dog, while also working on their owners and the task at hand. I will put up an example of this kind of program at the end of this section for better understanding.
Walking your dog is a great stress reliever
This program includes cardio, strength training and stability moves while dogs remain leashed with their owners throughout the class while they go through a variety of exercises from walking or running to sit/stays to agility.
When you want your pooch to stop running and stay still or sit for a while, the obedience training comes into play. It’s quite tough for a dog to stop and sit when there is no reason for them to do so. Here you get a chance to teach them obedience with positive reinforcement training.
The sample workout
- Begin with a 3-minute walk to keep your dog moving
- 10 push-ups (or the most you are able to do) on a picnic table with your dog in sit/stay position
- A 30-second brisk walk followed by a 10-second sprint and then another 30-second walk
- 30- second plank with your doggie lying down or sitting beside
- Walking lunges about 20-30 with your dog in a heel
Repeat that 5 times through.
In a nutshell, you should start a new fitness routine where your four-legged furry friend can join you to get the exercise you both require. Check out some more exercises in the last section.
Dog Yoga (Doga)
Dog Yoga or more popularly known as Doga is another form of exercise to get fitter. Dog yoga isn’t as ridiculous as it might sound. Yoga comes naturally to dogs. They can stretch or try to stretch voluntarily, haven’t you seen them stretching often in funny poses?
Doga can be good for you both
Doga is not only about the moves. Your dog observes you while you’re performing yoga, feeling your energy, connecting to it and staying calm. There won’t be any treats or talking.
Doga is a great bonding physical activity which can be around 40 minutes long. However, dogs cannot stay calm for hours, but as long as everyone stays calm and quiet, they too remain calm.
You might have to start off with a short 5 minute session and build up to a longer one.
Dogs tend to try imitating their owners. Moreover, dogs are used as props to perform the Yoga to perfect your moves. So the thing with Doga is you get motivation from your pooch, perform healthy yoga moves and your dog learns to connect with you.
Outdoor Sports With Your Fido
So far we have discussed combined workouts and dog yoga, but it doesn’t end there. Outdoor sports are another cool exercise you can enjoy with your dog. Here are some activities your dog would equally love to enjoy.
- Paddle Boarding
- Trail Running
- Roller Boarding
- 5 KM Race
However, it is important to note that your dog should be well-trained to accompany you in outdoor sports and is ok with the presence of other canine friends around. A calm and non-reactive dog with utmost obedience will be perfect for a great adventure.
Your dog is a perfect run partner
While you will be burning some calories and enjoying the fun sports your dog will learn something new and get a lot of physical activity. He will get to explore new places.
The best thing about dogs is they are not afraid of the destination. They enjoy the journey, explore and trust unconditionally their owner for their safety and well-being. All in all, outdoor sports will give you and your pooch loads of physical activity, the bond between you two will be strengthened, and your dog’s mental health will also improve.
A Little Bit More about Your Workout Exercise
We have discussed the workout in the first section. It was to let you understand how your dog can be your workout companion. Let’s now see what kind of exercises could be added to your workout routine.
Tie the leash to your waist so that your dog can move freely. Now, you can perform the side shuffle as you would do without your canine buddy and return to the initial position by shuffling back. The only difference is your dog moves with you. Perform 10 reps.
Instruct your dog to sit or lie down. Get into a push-up position. Lower your body keeping your legs straight until it just hovers over the ground. You can also touch your leg from toe to a knee on the ground if it is hard for you to do a push-up. While you catch your breath between reps tell your dog to sit and lay down for five times.
Doggo Wall Sitting
Sit on your knees bent at 90° angle with your back against a wall. If your dog is of a small breed hold him in your arms while you perform wall sitting. If he is too large, make him place his front two paws on your thighs to make this exercise more challenging. Hold this position for a minute.
Perform normal high knees across your workout area or your room back and forth. Keep your dog leashed to your waist so that he can move with you. Do this for a minute.
Lay down and tell your dog to sit beside you. Take up a push-up position, make sure your position is perfect. Hold this position as long as you can and do 5 reps. Your dog will try to imitate you and if not a plank, he will at least do his favorite stretch.
If you can get your dog to stand on your back, even better!
Working out with your dog is not just saving his walking time and playtime. But also, it offers a chance to strengthen the bond between you two. You get an exercise partner, your dog gets obedience training and physical activity. In a nutshell, when you are considering your pooch for exercising with, it is totally going to change your workout routine.