10 Reasons Outdoor Exercise Is Better For You
If you are sick of the gym, or desperate for a change of routine then why not think outside the box, quite literally. Taking your fitness outside allows you to play with natures training ground, here are 10 reasons why outdoor exercise is better for you!
Break the Cycle
By exercising outdoors you are able to break up the routine of exercising in the same way and in the same environment. Working out is hard enough on its own, without it becoming mundane. Exercising outside is different, its presents lots of different challenges and it’s constantly evolving with changes in weather and conditions under foot. Each workout will never be quite the same as last time!
The constant change in conditions also affects the amount of calories you burn. For example if you are running or cycling outside and exposing yourself to the resistance of wind, rain or even the higher temperatures of a sunny day then you will burn more calories than in a controlled environment such as the gym. Furthermore, that slope on the way back up to your house makes you work harder because all surfaces have different gradients.
Feel Good Factor
Spending time outdoors provides us with this feel good factor of connecting yourself with the outdoor environment. Serotonin and other feel good chemicals are released as you exercise outdoors due to the influx of fresh air, clearer oxygen and avoid an air conditioned gym. So not only are you boosting your health and fitness benefits but any stress and tension will take a hit too!
Variety Is the Spice of Life
Ok, so you go to the gym on a regular basis, you may even try a different machine today but yet you have the same view, surrounded by the same people in the same conditions. Outdoor exercise transforms the workout environment and this stops you getting bored. Exercising outdoors provides you with a different backdrop of scenery every time, you have a lot to look at which takes the emphasis away from your gruelling session.
Burn Calories Not Money
Gym memberships can be expensive, what more can I say?! Outdoor exercise is free and also saves you time travelling to and from the gym. Not only is it free and available to everyone but you also don’t lose out on what the gym has to offer. Short, sharp movements such as hill sprints, push ups and squats with minimal rest is the best way of burning body fat and getting maximum results. Terrain that’s on an incline can provide all the resistance training your gym can offer as well as making you feel lighter and your wallet feel heavier. Outdoor ‘gym’ equipment such as tree trunks, park benches and climbing frames etc. can enhance your free workout further.
Workout For Longer
Time can drag in the gym, there’s only so much of the music channel or a reality TV show you can watch in the gym while doing cardio. By changing your routine and exercising outdoors you get to see new faces, a new environment and a new time of day in your neighbourhood. Taking in this scenic route can certainly combat boredom and encourage you to work out for longer. When you are less aware of the exercise or effort you will be surprised how far you have run or how long you have been exercising. Even if you do run out of steam, the walk back home is a great cool down ready for the next day!
Your gym may well be a top of the range air conditioned space, however you are still working out in a closed environment where the air is, well, conditioned! Your mind and body responds well to fresh air, you can go for longer and work harder. Boosting your energy and positive thinking by working outdoors in the fresh air is a great way to revitalise your workout and encourage feelings of euphoria during and after exercise.
Working out in a public service building that’s available to hundreds of sweating, panting and puffing people doesn’t sound that attractive. These environments are a breeding ground for germs, infections, bugs and have to be controlled by either the staff at the centre or you personally by taking precautions.
However with outdoor exercise you reduce the pollution you are exposed to, together with above mentioned benefits your outdoor session is cleaner than you think!
Thinking Clearly Outside The Box
We are outdoor animals living and exercising largely indoors, by flipping this around and spending more time outdoors you will increase your natural wellbeing. The feelings out exercising outdoors allows us to think more clearly, increase the production of our feel good chemicals and prevent a build-up of stress. By working out in nature’s playground you give yourself time to think and concentrate on the environment around you, breathe fresh air and workout for longer; now doesn’t that sound like peace of mind!
Outdoor exercise gives you total control of where and when. Whether you’re a busy parent or work gets in the way then the gym may not suit your times of need. However the great outdoors is ready when you are! No changing rooms, no queuing up to swipe your card, no lines just you and nature at its best. This empowers you to organise your day or have a spontaneous work out if your plans change. You can even work out on holiday in brand new environments and keep up your general health and wellbeing all your round, you are in charge!
At our Fresh Start boot camp we certainly encourage the ability to change and develop different types of exercise to match your health and fitness goals. You will get lots of opportunities for outdoor exercise when you attend our Boot-camp holiday in Chiang Mai, Thailand.