I’m all about being green. In general. Recycling, upcycling, air miles, composting, you get the drift. But I’m also all about Green exercise. Getting outdoors, into the non recycled air. And for me, that’s one of the benefits!
In general you are pretty limited in the gym. Sure you can adjust the incline, but nothing beats the undulating terrain of the outdoors. Working out outside promotes “muscle confusion,” which can help your body burn more calories. Very cool. And it’s totally cool to be green.
While outside, you will probably also work out longer than you would indoors at a gym because indoors you’re probably constantly checking how much time you have left. It’s easy to lose track of time and exercise longer when you’re working outside. And for me it’s true, if I’m feeling good running or walking outside it’s easier to keep going, to the next tree or the next bend. But if I’m on the countdown clock on the treadmill, I’m likely to stop.
And there are other perks. Vitamin D—one of the fat-soluble vitamins essential to strong bones and a healthy immune system—can be attained via safe sun exposure.
Your environment constantly changes when you exercise outdoors; weather, temperature, and terrain are all factors out of your control. Our minds require a great deal of mental focus to adjust to these subtle changes. As a result, we can receive a temporary break from daily stress, which can improve our ability to focus on day-to-day tasks.
Course, for me, running outside for fitness helps improve my ability to both ride my horses, and also improve my orienteering. My two loves. But the endorphins you get from running as not to be sniffed at. And the time spent with my family while improving our fitness level is an extra bonus. Even if I am the slowest runner of us all. *sigh* I’ll catch them one day, but in the meantime I’ll feel good while trying.