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Best ways to get active this November

Tue, November 17, 2020

Swim in the sea, hike across hills or cycle in the desert – discover new ways to stay fit in the city while taking in remarkable sights

Swim in the sea, hike across hills or cycle in the desert – discover new ways to stay fit in the city while taking in remarkable sights



Sprint past the shifting dunes of the Al Marmoom desert or amble through urban districts – there are so many ways to explore the city on foot this Dubai Fitness Challenge. Take your pick from a variety of trails that offer splendid sights and challenging obstacles to push your fitness to the next level.

You don't have to be a marathoner to sign up for the Skechers Performance Run, but even seasoned runners will find a distance worth conquering. Led by Arabian Adventures, Dubai Running Tours invites you to wander through the city's iconic landmarks. Cover Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood and Dubai Creek on a self-guided 3km route, or register for longer trails through Downtown Dubai and Jumeirah with members of the ASICS FrontRunner club. The Dubai Run, a flagship event of the festival, returns in a new shape and form – sign up to turn the city into your personalised jogging track on 27 November.



Stretch it out at a rejuvenating yoga session led by some of the city's most motivating instructors. Studios across Dubai offer a variety of styles that cater to all forms and preferences, from the uplifting movements of Vinyasa flow to the challenges of Bikram yoga.

The Dubai Festival Plaza is hosting free yoga sessions every day throughout the festival, which kicks off bright and early at 7am to views of its calming waterfront. Register in advance to book your spot as spaces are limited. Keep an eye out for the yoga pop-ups hosted at Ripe Market where you can pick up fresh produce and artisanal souvenirs before rolling out your mat for extra zen. For more variety, check out Dubai's top spots for yoga


Group fitness

The Dubai Fitness Challenge is determined to fulfil its promise that working out can be great fun. The annual festival organises free classes and activities to get the whole city moving for at least 30 minutes every day, and this year's schedule doesn't disappoint. City Centre Deira is hosting 45-minute Zumba, bootcamp and Bollywood dance sessions on select Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays so you can get your heart rate up before shopping. City Centre Mirdif is also offering bootcamp, yoga, Afro dance and body combat classes on Mondays, so check out the schedule to see which session piques your interest.

Home of the widely popular Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby 7s, The Sevens Stadium is hosting bodyweight workouts in collaboration with leading HIIT studios including Barry's Bootcamp, BARE and more. Sign up for seven-minute sessions by their knowledgeable instructors on the same turf rugby players have tackled it out for first place.



From shallow wadis in Hatta to urban running tracks admiring local architecture, Dubai is host to a variety of challenging – and fulfilling – triathlons suited for athletes of all ages and levels. Exclusive to female athletes, the Dubai Women's Triathlon is a popular event that invites participants to swim through the Arabian Gulf, run along Dubai Canal and cycle past Jumeirah Beach Residences. Revel in stunning surroundings while pushing your limits at one of three courses suited to you. Dubai hosts plenty of action-packed triathlons during the winter weather – the Wadi Bih Run in Hatta is another highlight – so stay tuned to the events calendar to see what's coming up.



The Arabian Gulf offers a refreshing setting for watersports. While you can always practice laps in glamorous hotel pools, a swim in the sea has a charm and a challenge of its own. Plan a beach day to enjoy the excellent winter weather before breaking a sweat in the waves, or amp up the thrills with a little friendly competition. 

There's no better or more exciting challenge for swimming enthusiasts than King & Queen Swim. Taking place off the shores of The Pointe on Palm Jumeirah, this swim meet allows you to wade through the the water with 200m distances for eight to 12-year olds, half a mile distance for participants aged 12 years and older, and a full mile (1.6km) distance for those aged 15 years and older. Bag the first place in the mile run category and you will be titled King and Queen of The Pointe before your peers. For a more laid-back competition, drop a reel in the water and catch a big prize at the Kayak Fishing Championship, hosted by the Dubai International Marine Club.  



Cyclists from around the world love Al Qudra for its challenging 86km biking track that cuts through the desert landscape – you may even catch a passing glimpse of local wildlife, such as Arabian oryx, along the way. Take on the path solo or with friends, with bicycles available to rent right at the starting point.

Alternatively, channel your competitive side with The Great Pulse Ride on 27 November. Whether your family is looking for some fun, outdoor bonding time over a 5km, or if you want to dial up the challenge with 20km and 40km courses, find something suited to everyone at this bi-annual community event.  

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