The Benefits of Outdoor Fitness
When it comes to exercise, there is nothing better than taking it outside. Yes, it’s true that any exercise is better than no exercise and we should be doing something to get us moving on a regular basis anyway, but there is much to be said about taking your fitness outside. This article is going to take a look at the general benefits of outdoor fitness.
The general benefits of outdoor fitness include all of the same benefits of regular fitness along with many more that are specifically related to being outside. For starters, a good level of fitness is just as important for your mental health as it is for your physical health. It has been proven that exercise can help reduce stress and improve a person’s mood because it releases the ‘feel good’ hormones into your system; dopamine, endorphins, serotonin and adrenaline. If you or someone you know is being treated for depression then some of the hormones listed may sound familiar to you. That’s because antidepressants are prescribed to increase levels of all of those same things in a person to help combat depression. That is also why many doctors will recommend exercise to anyone who is having issues with mood and anxiety. Proper fitness also means improved cardiovascular health which improves your endurance and energy levels as well as your heart’s health, which in turn has a positive effect on other aspects of your health.
Now let’s talk about the general benefits of outdoor fitness specifically. Heading outdoors for fitness not only provides you with the benefits that come from fitness in the first place but it also offers you the fun factor that comes from a change in scenery and more variety in terms of activities. By finding an outdoor activity that you enjoy you’re considerably more likely to accomplish your fitness goals. Outdoor fitness means being able to be active while participating in activities that don’t feel like a workout and nothing more. Things such as hiking, cycling, walking and running feel entirely different than doing them indoors on a stationary bike or treadmill because you get to enjoy nature while getting your workout. Incorporating outdoor fitness into your life is also easy because, for the most part, it’s free. You may not have the time or the money to go to a gym, but you can take a walk on your lunch hour or opt to turn walking your dog into a better workout by heading to a nearby trail or hill or running instead of just strolling.
Of all the general benefits of outdoor exercise, the last one I’m going to mention is vitamin D. This is something that you can get naturally from the sun. By heading outside for fitness you are not only getting much needed exercise but also vitamin D which has been proven to lower your risk of certain cancers, including breast cancer. By going out for a quick walk or bike ride, you could be adding years to your life. I’d say that’s worth doing!