As you can see I'm here trying to reconnect with nature at all costs. Snow storm...who cares. But there's a method to my madness. Working out outdoors has numerous benefits for both physical and mental health. It goes beyond just getting fresh air and here are a few reasons why you should consider incorporating outdoor exercise into your routine as well.
First and foremost, exercising outdoors exposes you to natural light, which can help regulate your body’s circadian rhythm and improve sleep quality. This is especially important during the winter months when the days are shorter and people are more likely to experience seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Additionally, being in nature has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety. Research has found that just looking at pictures of nature can lower cortisol levels, a hormone associated with stress. Imagine the benefits of actually being in nature, surrounded by the sights, sounds, and smells of the natural world.
Exercising outdoors also allows for a change of scenery, which can be especially beneficial if you’re feeling stuck in a rut. A new environment can provide a fresh perspective and help break up the monotony of a typical workout routine.
Another benefit of outdoor exercise is the sense of accomplishment it can provide. Whether it’s hiking to the top of a mountain or running a 5k, the feeling of completing a challenging outdoor activity can be incredibly empowering and boost self-esteem.
Working out outdoors also provides an opportunity to connect with others. Joining a group hike or running club can be a great way to meet new people and form a supportive community.
Finally, outdoor exercise can be a great way to disconnect from technology and other distractions. Being in nature allows you to focus on the present moment and clear your mind, which can improve overall well-being.
Overall, working out outdoors has a variety of benefits for both physical and mental health. If you’re looking to improve your overall well-being, consider incorporating outdoor exercise into your routine. From the natural light exposure to the sense of accomplishment, being in nature can improve your mood, reduce stress, anxiety and improve your overall well-being. It is also a way to disconnect from technology, meet new people and form a supportive community. So, next time you're deciding between the gym or the great outdoors, consider the many benefits of exercising in nature.