How to Lifestyle

How the Dutch keep fit

Don’t let my tall glass of iced tea, worn out running shoes, and yoga mat fool you. I don’t enjoy a good workout. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that moving your body is important to good health. It’s one of the reasons why the Dutch are always so fit.

And it’s no secret that the Dutch have an easy time of staying in shape. A lot of their healthy lifestyle comes from eating well. But there are also many different ways they workout. So how do the Dutch manage to maintain their perfect figures if they don’t frequent a traditional gym?

Biking everywhere
The Dutch are renown for being serious bike people. Anywhere you go, you’ll find bike racks with no space to park your own. Biking is a superior way to get around with needing a car. For some, cars are super expensive and a luxury to own. For others, it’s better to go green and leave that auto in the driveway. Either way, the Dutch can be seen on their bikes in rain and shine. It’s the best way for kids to get to school too. I’ve seen mothers with as many as two children on their bikes. Needless to say, owning a bike is a must for a majority of the country. This is my preferred way to workout because I can also play Pokémon GO.

Boot Camp
These workout groups are becoming common especially in our town. An instructor sets the time and place for groups of 10 to meet up. Then they jog or do other cardio workouts together. We’ve come across groups with stretching as their main focus too. Whatever the case, many Boot Camp activities seem tough. These are for the people who like to push their limits too. It’s rare for us to see a group that isn’t sweating profusely!

Evening walks
Walks around the local parks are very common for families with young children or retired folks. We have a lot of wandelen areas that make for perfect for after dinner walks. A stroll might even be common before bed. I’ve seen lots of people walking late at night if the weather is good enough. It’s pretty safe to walk so late in the quiet neighborhoods but I know that can’t be said for the whole country.

Yoga in the park
Like boot camp, these workouts are super common. We often see classes of 10-15 people practicing yoga in the park. A good mat is all that’s needed. While I’m sure this can be peaceful for some, I prefer to do yoga where I am most comfortable! I’ve spoken to my tutor about this, as she also has a yoga class. She said it’s much easier to do in a classroom where the ground is softer and even. In the park, the ground can be hard and too bumpy!

Marathons for fun
Sander’s boss does this quite often. Since the country is so small, many of them trek from city to city. Major streets are closed so the runners can have a safe pathway to travel. These events can be small scale or have thousands of participants. It sounds amazing to be a part of but I don’t have it in me! I admire the folks that do though! There’s something to be said about the people who walk, jog, or run for the thrill of it.

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