Your beach essentials are packed, the car is loaded, your voicemail and e-mail are set for “out of office” and you’re ready for that beach vacation. You’ve worked so hard to just relax — but remember to bring your tennis shoes and water shoes, and plan to stay active. Whether you’re a mermaid-like me and love the water, or you prefer to keep your feet firmly planted on the sand, you have so many options for breaking a sweat at the beach — all while having fun. 

Here are some of my favorite beach activities that let you soak up the sun, as well as every drop of fun and fitness, on your getaway. 

Walk it out: Who loves to walk on the beach? I definitely do! When you can, fit in a power walk or a run. One of the best exercises is digging your feet in deep and just walking. Go for a brisk stroll in the sand, or enjoy the many walking paths along the beach and waterways. It is the perfect way to get in your exercise and take in the coastal beauty. Shelling is one of my favorite hobbies, and getting in a great walk while collecting beach treasures is a bonus. 

Level up your swim: Try four 30-minute swimming sessions a week — talk about a workout! The four main strokes are breaststroke, butterfly, backstroke, and freestyle. Just swimming a few laps offers a wealth of health benefits. 

Make like a mermaid and work out your core: When I say I am a mermaid, yes, I have a tail and all. Actually, it’s a monofin — a type of swim fin typically used in underwater sports. I love the reaction from people when I wear my tail at the beach or in the pool, but the core workout I get from the monofin is incomparable. Grab your own, and mermaid on! 

Power up on a paddleboard: It’s no surprise that paddle sports skyrocketed during the pandemic — and what better way is there to take in the Gulf, bay or lake than a muscle-searing workout on a stand-up paddleboard? Paddleboard yoga is also a great way to hit the water and challenge yourself while stretching and being one with nature. Yes, it’s one of my favorites! 

Bike or hike along the beaches and greenways: The beach is the perfect pathway to ride your bike. You can rent bicycles on vacation and stay on the sidewalks or paved beachside paths, or you can go off-road and bike through beautiful parks and other scenic spots. A hike through the national seashore can be a workout as well as an educational experience for you and the whole family. 

Soak it all in: I love the beach. It truly is my happiest place, and I just feel calmer by the shore. Any chance to swim in the Gulf, go shelling, finswimming, snorkeling, kayaking, or paddleboarding is a day well spent, so stay active and soak it all in. 

Karol Brandt is an executive host with Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort, as well as co-author of the Amazon best-seller “The Struggle is Real: Finally Break the Dieting Cycle, Transform Your Mind and Body, and Evolve into The Person You Have Always Wanted to Be” and the “30- Day Evolve Challenge Journal.” Contact Brandt by email at, Facebook/The Struggle Is Real or Instagram at karolbrandtnola. 

Image by stokpic from Pixabay