Staying Fit in Barcelona, Be Active

In this post, we look at how to stay fit in Barcelona while going through an intense MBA program, from the eyes of Ankit Nayal, IESE MBA 22, fitness entrepreneur, certified trainer and ex-bodybuilder.

Barcelona is a beautiful city, with mountains on the west side and beaches on the east. No matter what your discipline of fitness is, it caters to running, hiking, surfing or anything else. While in Beijing I used to regularly sponsor and organize fitness events to support the community and spread my passion for fitness. When I moved here, I established a group called ‘Be Active Barcelona’ to offer free social fitness activities and continue with my vision of making the world fit. For me, the beauty of fitness (and sports in general) is that it unites us all. No matter what diverse backgrounds we represent, on the field we are all the same. As we are one community, several of my IESE classmates (Andrea Cyganiak, Fabian Fiege, and Alejandra Scherk) are lending me a helping hand with the trainings. Along with 200+ members, mostly IESEians, but also students from ESADE and fitness enthusiasts from Barcelona, we organize workouts or outdoor activities twice a week. Below we highlight the different ways we stay fit in Barcelona, even during the COVID era:

1.Beach workout on Barceloneta: When we need that extra toughness, we go to the beach. Anyone who has done a workout on the sand will tell you how the difficulty gets ramped up because of the pull the sand exerts, and we love it!

2.Hiking to Sagrat Cor Church, Tibidabo: At a distance of 7 km from the district of Sarria, the Sagrat Cor Church on Tibidabo provides beautiful views of the city while ensuring you get a nice uphill hike. Pack some healthy snacks for when you are celebrating your climb at the stairs of the church!

3.Jogging on Carretera de Las Aguas: This 9 km path which offers magnificant panoramic views of the city was once the service road for a pipeline which transported water, and hence the name. The pipes have now been removed and the path is now frequented by joggers, cyclists, dog walkers and families.








4.HIIT workout at the stairs by the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc: Even though the shows are closed at the Magic Fountain, we host our own high intensity show at the the stairs with over 500 steps!

5.Sprint at the track in Barcelona Olympic Park: It is a truly exhilarating experience sweating it out at the same location as the athletes of the 1992 Olympic games. You can almost hear the audience shout your name. Extra bonus, go early in the morning and you will catch sight of the sun rise over the entire city.

6.A good old bodyweight workout on my terrace: Last but not the least, we used my terrace in Sarria to ensure our sessions were held on a regular basis without interruptions, as our health does not wait! #noexcuses

You can follow our ‘Be Active’ activities here:








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Camille Chow View more

Associate Director, Admissions (MBA '16)

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