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Every time of year is the best time of year to work out outdoors in Atlanta. Winters are mild and perfect for breaking a sweat during long runs and rigorous workout routines, while summer means finding those fitness zones mercifully set up in the shade.
Many of Atlanta’s parks have free mini-gyms for total bodyweight workouts, and others have a lay of the land that will get your heart pumping (hill sprints, anyone?). Long story short: there’s no excuse not to soak up that Vitamin D during your daily workout.
Skaters rejoice! This skatepark received a blessing from the Tony Hawk Foundation, who praised the park for its size and design, good for both beginners and experts. If you’ve ever wanted to kick up your skate game—or add some tricks to your favorite cardio/glute workout—head here. Fitt Tip: The park itself is home to athletic fields and lawns, where King of Pops Yoga in the Park is known to set up. Every Tuesday evening, King of Pops leads a guided yoga hour, beginning at 6pm in the winter seasons and 7pm in the summer (and weather permitting).
This park recently went through a major transformation. It was given a $1.6 million renovation and now sports a basketball court, two tennis courts, ⅛-mile lap track, and a kickass workout station in Old Fourth Ward. Go here for pull-ups/sit-ups/push-ups, dips, back extensions, and a jog around the track. And you can finish your workout with a game of ping pong! They have a table on site but bring your own paddles and ping pong balls.
Just when you thought Woodruff Park couldn’t get any better! The park hosts a summer yoga and fitness series, serves as a meeting place for the monthly bike rally known as Critical Mass, and the massive ATL-shaped playground comes equipped with climbing grips and pull-up rings. Not too shabby for a mid-day downtown sweat sesh!
The BeltLine is a developing trail and park system aiming to span nearly 30 miles across the city. Train for a marathon running through beautiful, refurbished parkland and green spaces, connected by both paved and dirt trails lined with public art. If running isn’t your style, a bike ride will definitely get your heart pumping.
A beloved BeltLine baby, this Sylvan Hills oasis is a haven for fitness junkies and is probably the busiest outdoor workout spot on this list — for good reason. Not only does it have a fitness zone (complete with chest press, lat pull-down, and power rower), but it’s basically a beautiful, 50-acre sport park. We’re talking six tennis courts, one and a half basketball courts, two baseball fields, and a full 18-hole disc golf course.
One of the many parks blessed by the BeltLine project, this park in its namesake neighborhood has tons of recreational options, like a baseball field and tennis courts. And if you’re a swimmer, you’re in luck. The park has a natatorium featuring a 10-lane, 25-yard by 25-meter swimming pool.
Go here for arm day. You’ll find high bars, pull-up bars, dip bars, and a Swedish wall bar (that wall-mounted ladder apparatus). You’ll also find some steep stairs by the Piedmont Driving Club, plus the Active Oval running loop if you’re looking for a dash of cardio. Fitt Tip: fitness groups like BC4C Outdoor Fitness and MODO Fitness Boot Camp make Piedmont Park their “gym” of choice. Check them out!
If you want a tough workout, head to the West Palisades Trail on Akers Dr. After you park your car, you’ll follow a paved path leading down to the Chattahoochee River — and a very steep, very long hill to sprint up until you collapse. Not enough of a challenge for you? The wooded, dirt trail system is rocky and hilly and is relatively tough for seasoned hikers. We definitely recommend cooling down with a dip in the Chattahoochee when you’re done!
Found just west of Kirkwood, Coan Park’s fitness zone is dressed to the nines with a dip bar, cross-country ski machine, inclined sit-up benches, a power rower — and that’s just that half of it. Most of the equipment can fit at least two people at a time, too. Cool down after your workout with an easy tennis match or maybe a well-earned barbecue!
Of course the largest park in Decatur comes with a gorgeous spot to get your sweat on. The equipment is modest but still gets the job done. You’ll find an elliptical, a stationary bike, leg press, and seated strength trainer (all designed with a sleek, wood-and-steel aesthetic, too). It’s also a quick walk away from Glenlake Pool. Fitt Tip: when the weather’s wet, the ground around the equipment can become muddy — but that’s just half the fun, right?
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