Backpacking Across Costa Rica

Perhaps one of the most romantic, adventurous and exciting parts of growing up is taking a trip to Central America. The depth of experiences and the heights of excitement that this continent provides for young budget travelers and backpackers are simply awe-inspiring.Costa Rica is one of the countries in Central America that attracts backpackers and enthusiastic travelers from all over the world. And it is hardly surprising, really, given the gamut of things to do and see here, from lying on the beaches to dancing in the cities. Costa Rica is defined by its beauty and its fun-loving attitude; traveling here is all about experiencing how life really should be lived.Here, then, are some of the things that a budget traveler or a backpacker simply must experience while staying in Costa Rica.The BeachesWith the Pacific Ocean to the West and the Caribbean to the East, Costa Rica is blessed with a huge number of absolutely breathtaking beaches. You do have to find them, however: Costa Rica’s more frequented beaches (such as those around San Jose) are also its worst. Far better are the deserted and isolated idyllic spots tucked away along its coastlines. So be prepared to travel a bit in order to find your perfect beach in Costa Rica!Rafting in Rica:For the adventurous backpacker, intent on doing something wild, a rafting trip down the Chorro Section of the Naranjo River is one of the most adrenaline-pumping activities the country has to offer. Not for the feint hearted, this wild rafting trip is an experience to reckon with.┬áIf white water rapids are not your cup of tea, a rafting trip along the calm waters and beautiful surrounding scenery of the Penas Blancas river is probably a better bet.Mountain biking:Costa Rica is a mountainous place, which makes it great for mountain biking. Experienced bikers particularly enjoy the country’s volcanic areas, as they provide fun – if at times testing – rides. The dirt road that lies between the Irazu Volcano and the Turrialba Volcano is a particular favorite.Explore San JoseA trip to Costa Rica is incomplete without experiencing the capital, San Jose. This is a city that has the classic Central American flavor – evocative and vibrant; it will catch you in its net of color and spin you around until you’re immersed in its web of fun. Life here isn’t always an easy ride though; by day San Jose is as big and noisy a city as you will find in these parts. Still, the nightlife makes it all worthwhile!While spending time here, San Hose hostels are probably the best place to put up in. Clean, comfortable, fun and cheap, they make for a good base form which to explore the city.Hostel 1110, for example, is a long standing favorite with the backpacking crowd. Located near the Avenida Central, this hostel offers a wide range of facilities at a very decent price. Costa Rica Backpackers is also an ideal hostel for budget travelers and students who are backpacking in Costa Rica (especially those on the lookout for a party).

Exercise, Health and Fitness – The Joint Venture

There are days and there are days! Sure we all feel that way sometimes and experience days when we barely have time to breathe it seems leave alone exercise! On the other hand maybe you just plain hate exercising like I do. What we need to be aware of is that exercise, health and fitness are all connected and a simple 10 minute daily workout combined with right eating is a surefire way of ensuring overall fitness.There are a few really basic exercises that you can do on a daily basis, which are listed below. Just think of the exercise routine as something that has to be done each day like brushing your teeth or having a shower and get it over with, it will soon become habit forming.o Hip thrust: give your hams, calves, glutes and lower back a workout. Lie flat on your back with knees bent, feet and head on the floor. Thrust out your hips in the direction of the ceiling until you are in line with your shoulders, hips and knees; then go back to start position. 25-50 reps are good to start with and you can slowly build up to 100.o Squat press: give your gluts, quads and upper body a workout. Depending on your fitness level hold a pair of dumbbells in your hands at shoulder position. Squat keeping hips back and weight on heels; now drive upward with the power from your legs pressing the dumbbells straight up. Lower your arms.o Push ups: give your shoulders, chest and triceps a workout. Place feet and palms on floor in a downward facing spread out pose; drop into the push up position, roll into the upward facing pose and then reverse. Return to start and repeat.Doing these exercises should not take more than 10 minutes and will limber you up for the day.Exercise, health and fitness are a sort of joint venture; now that you have some quick tune up exercises to do we can take a look at health and fitness to complete the triangle. Good health and fitness comes from the right kind of diet and lifestyle. If you drink too much alcohol and smoke like a chimney no amount of right eating is going to keep you in good health.Did you know that an excellent method of ensuring good health is to keep a pet? Pets have been found to be natural mood enhancers; lower blood pressure; reduce stress and tension; lower risk of heart attack and fight depression among other benefits.Another way to improve and maintain good health is through aerobic exercise. Research has linked aerobic exercise to various health and fitness benefits such as cancer prevention, osteoporosis, diabetes, depression, obesity and weight loss. Swimming, riding, water aerobics, walking, hiking, dancing and similar activities are all examples of aerobic exercise; you can choose anything that you enjoy doing or is easiest for you to do. The main thing is to take up some form of exercise to enjoy the benefits of good health and fitness.