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Benefits of Outdoor Activities


Written by Teo Miranda-Moreno


Introduction

Physical activity is essential for overall health and well-being, and engaging in outdoor activities has been shown to have additional benefits compared to indoor exercise. Outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking, and gardening, provide opportunities for people to connect with nature, which can lead to improved mental health and stress reduction. In addition, outdoor activities often involve a greater variety of physical movements and environments, leading to a more diverse and challenging workout.


Benefits Include:

  • You will be happier - Exercising outdoors isn’t just good for your physical health. It helps with your mental health as well. Spending time in nature and the natural light can improve your mood and reduce stress and depression. Engaging in physical activity produces similar benefits and often times relaxes and cheers people up.

  • Your self-esteem will improve - Outdoor exercise stimulates all five senses in a way that indoor activities cannot. Additionally, being out in nature impacts the brain in a positive way, making you feel better about yourself.

  • Vitamin D levels go up - Vitamin D is also known as the “sunshine vitamin” because it is made in the skin when it’s exposed to sunlight. Studies suggest that Vitamin D may have protective effects against everything from osteoporosis to cancer to depression to heart attacks and stroke. Keep in mind, that too much sun can damage your skin. You only need about 10-15 minutes of sun several days a week during the warm weather. Use sunscreen if you plan to be outside for an extended amount of time.

  • You will exercise longer and burn more calories - Research shows that those who exercise outdoors burn 10% more calories when they walk or run than they do when they work out on a treadmill at the same speed. When exercising outdoors, the distractions of your surroundings take your mind off the work of working out. As a result, there’s a much greater chance that you’ll end up exercising longer than you would if you were exercising indoors. Another bonus, kids are twice as active when they play outside.

Also…

Outdoor activity has been shown to have a positive impact on stress and anxiety levels. Research has found that being in nature, or even just viewing scenes of nature, can help to reduce stress and lower blood pressure. The sights, sounds, and smells of the natural world can provide a sense of calm and relaxation, helping to clear the mind and improve overall well-being. Additionally, outdoor activity can serve as a distraction from daily stresses and can provide a sense of accomplishment and accomplishment, both of which can help to reduce anxiety. Engaging in physical activity in a natural setting may also release endorphins, which are known to improve mood and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Overall, outdoor activity can be an effective way to reduce stress and anxiety and promote a sense of relaxation and well-being.