The studies have been done and the resounding evidence shows that it’s time to put away the gym membership. Getting outside for your workout provides a wide variety of benefits over putting in your time at the gym. Boosting not only physical health but mental health as well, there are many reasons to hit the pavement rather than the elliptical. With spring upon us and summer just around the corner, here are five great reasons to turn the treadmill off and head outside for your next workout.
1) Soak up some vitamins.
Getting your daily workout in under the sun’s rays can help boost your bodies vitamin D3 count. This helps boost the bodies metabolism and improve your bone health. As it turns out, the sun is the gift that keeps on giving. Studies show that more sun exposure helps give you a better nights sleep and also increases your immune function. Just remember to wear sunscreen before you head out to reduce the chance of skin cancer.
2) Extend your workout.
Recent studies show that getting your exercise in outdoors feels easier than working out indoors, which can help you workout longer (or make it a little less painful to finish your normal circuit). You also get a better work out when it is completed outdoors than you do when working out indoors. So hit the pavement, get a good workout, and make it look easy while you do it.
3) It boosts your state of mind.
Decrease your feelings of depression, tension, and anxiety while you workout by getting some time in outdoors. In a study involving over 800 adults, the results were conclusive that working out outdoors decreased all of these negative ailments while increasing energy and making participants feel rejuvenated post workout. Those who participated in the study also reported that they enjoyed their workout more when it was done outside rather than inside.
4) Get with the program-and stick with it.
Recent studies were done on a group of older women in their 50’s and 60’s and the results reflected that those who got their work out in outside were more likely to stick with a routine. This is likely due to being left in a better mode post workout, and feeling more accomplished by working out longer. Set yourself up for success after your New Year’s resolution by completing your workouts outside.
5) Fend off gym time boredom.
“Nothing is more fun than staring at the same wall or monotonous TV show while running in the same place for an hour.” Said no one, ever. Many people report that their gym routine kicks the bucket due to the absolute boredom and monotony inside the gym walls. Break up your routine by getting outside for some new scenery. With so many different areas to get your workout in depending on your region-the park, riverside, city, or mountains-you can fight boredom a little easier with the ever changing scenery.
The results from all of these studies have a pretty resounding result: people get a better, longer workout when it is completed outdoors. They also report greater feelings of well-being and a decrease in feelings of depression and are able to stick with their workout routine longer than those who worked out inside. Next time you need to get your workout in, give it a shot outdoors and see if you get these same results.