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Outdoor Fitness Training Is Better Than Gym Workouts


Nature will leave you feeling refreshed, re-energized and focused Connecting with nature improves our overall health and well-being. The problem is that we now spend less time outdoors interacting with the natural world even though our brains are hardwired for it. Outdoor workouts allow us to reconnect with nature while providing numerous benefits. Outdoor training cannot be replicated in a gym Constant changes in the environment, weather, temperature, and terrain are all factors out of our control. Our minds require a great deal of mental focus to adjust to these subtle changes and this translates to better training outcomes and body control. For example, the uneven terrain requires more lateral movements and the activation of stabilizing muscles in our ankles, knees, and core. Natural landscapes simply provide us with a more interesting view. The visual distraction decreases our rate of perceived exertion allowing us to train harder and for longer periods of time. Studies reveal that those who incorporate outdoor exercise into their fitness regimen have better adherence to their exercise programs. The sights, sounds, and varying terrain associated with outdoor training cannot be replicated in a gym. Vitamin D boost When exposed to the sun, our bodies naturally convert cholesterol in our skin to vitamin D3. The recommended dietary intake per day for adults is 600 IU. Deficiency of vitamin D has been linked to increased risk of a host of chronic diseases, such as osteoporosis, heart disease, and some cancers. Our skin only requires a few minutes of daily sun exposure in order to maintain adequate levels. There are many factors that influence the exact exposure needed, such as ethnicity, amount of skin exposed, age, and the UV index. Less Stress and Better Mindset Green exercise contributes to decreased tension, confusion, and anger. Even looking at a green space can decrease the stress-related hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Natural sunlight combined with physical activity increases serotonin levels in our bodies, which can improve feelings of well-being and happiness. Serotonin is a mood-enhancing chemical, and a deficiency in serotonin has been linked to depression, anxiety, fatigue, and impaired cognitive function. Dedicating time each week to exercising outdoors will alleviate stress on busy days and improve mental well-being and self-esteem, and may even help fight depression.

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