I talk about exercising outdoors a lot and that I believe it can provide more mental health benefits than indoor exercise.
After the challenges that 2020 has thrown at us and potentially more to come, the option of being able to work out outside in your space or in a park seems quite appealing. It also simply costs less. There’s no gym membership and there’s no timetable to adhere to.
The following benefits were reportedly even stronger after exercising outdoors than they were after indoor activities:
· Increased energy
· Positive engagement
· Enjoyment and satisfaction
Similarly, it seems exercising outdoors can decrease the following sensations even further than indoor exercise does:
Evidence suggests that exercising outdoors can make your workout seem less demanding. From appreciating your surroundings to taking care where you put your feet, you’re so focused on where you are that you pay less attention to how tired you are, and so able to push yourself further. And that’s only the start of a body of research that suggests that exercising outdoors is – in many cases – actually better for you than doing the same workout in a gym.
By combining exercise and the outdoors, you get a multiplying effect. People find they are less tense and more rejuvenated after an outdoor workout. Fresh air and increased oxygen consumption cause your body to produce more Serotonin which is a chemical that makes you feel good, meaning your stress goes down and your happiness goes up.
You also burn more calories just by taking your session outdoors you will burn more calories than if you did an identical session inside. The main reasons being that wind resistance begins to affect all of your movements when you’re outdoors, which builds up over a session and the changing terrain and uneven ground force you to work harder as you move across it.
Let’s not forget the sunshine. When our skin is exposed to sunlight we produce Vitamin D3. An important vitamin for bone health, metabolic function and our mood. Exposure to sunlight has also been proven to help us sleep better at night, improve our immune system and increase endorphin production.
All of this, in turn, helps you stick to your regime. Working outdoors gets you motivated and keeps you feeling that way and being out in the fresh air is the key.
Therefore, who needs the gym when you have the great outdoors? Sure there's no question that there will be a time and place for the treadmill and the elliptical, but there's nothing quite like surrounding yourself with greenery and breathing in fresh air. It clears your head, improves your happiness, helps you drop stress like nothing else, and also that there is no such thing as bad weather if you’re dressed appropriately.
Want to give the theory a go? Get in touch with me and I will show you how you can get your heart rate up #comerainorshine xx