Hiking Benefits In The Great Outdoors
As we continue to discuss the mind and body connection today, we will share the benefits of hiking in the great outdoors mind, body and spirit. Walking and hiking are some of our favourite fitness activities because there are so many advantages to move well outdoors.
Getting fit and training well can be done indoors or outdoors, yet there are definite advantages of doing your exercise and movement practice in the great outdoors rather than in a stuffy gym or in your living room.
Outdoor activities have added advantages to indoor exercising. Some of these advantages are listed below:
1. Improve Spirituality. When you are exercising outdoors, you can get in touch with your spiritual side. Notice the gifts of nature in the form of the sky, trees, smells, and lakes around you. Meditate on the awe-inspiring beauty of these things and take the time to connect to your spirit as you exercise. This is a good time to relax your mind and express gratitude for the great things you see around you. Practice breathing in the fresh air if on the hiking trails to calm the mind, body and spirit as well as helping you connect to the energy of mother earth. In our opinion, there is nothing better.
2. Get In Touch With Fresh Air. What a concept? Exercising in a stuffy gym can be more than just unpleasant. Many people in the same area huffing and puffing can lead to respiratory diseases. This is also true with using weights or weight machines that have not been wiped down with antiseptics. Many diseases are passed by direct contact with something a sick person has touched and weights/weight machines are no exception. When you exercise outdoors, you breathe in the clean, fresh air and that is important for your overall wellbeing.
3. Take In The Beautiful Scenery. When you can exercise at a park, hiking trail or around a lake where you can lose yourself in the beauty of the physical space you are exercising in. Exercising in awe-inspiring surroundings has been shown to increase the time spent moving well. This is far better than watching the pedometer machine on a treadmill or count the miles you have walked. If you need to know how much you have walked outdoors, buy a pedometer that you clip to your belt. It will measure the number of steps and, the number of miles you have walked. It is guaranteed to be more effective if you are exercising in beautiful scenery rather than a stuffy gym from our experience.
4. A Place For Meditation. It is hard to get in the mind space for meditation if you are exercising around a lot of noise or many people. Even the noise of the treadmill or stair-stepper can be distracting so that you can’t focus on your breath for adequate meditation. When all you have are the sounds of nature and your footfalls to focus on, meditating on your breath can be an easy task. Getting out on the hiking trails can be a perfect place to practice a slow walking meditation. The practice is not only great to enjoy the slow pace of nature, but it also helps you connect easily by breathing in for the count of 4 steps, hold your breath for the count of 4 steps and breathe out for the count of 4 steps. If you are already there exercising, you have a much easier time to allow yourself to get in touch with the pace of nature and enjoy the tremendous feeling of connecting with your breath.
5. Stress Relief. Exercising outdoors is great for stress relief. Away from the hustle and bustle of your everyday life, exercising outdoors can reduce the level of your stress. Add one of the techniques described above, such as getting in touch with nature and meditation, and you will find even more stress relief. The fresh air and nature are also well known to alleviate stress, both physically and mentally. You don’t have to exercise alone if you are exercising for stress relief. Exercise with a friend or relative and you can talk away your stresses with that other person.
Exercising outdoors can be done in any climate, provided you dress for the weather. Outdoor exercise has so many benefits over indoor exercising that it is worth exercising even on a rainy or snowy day. Nature is beautiful, in all its forms. Don’t you agree?
Share any thoughts Benefits To Hiking In The Great Outdoors Mind, Body And Spirit in the comments below.
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We have outsourced our lifestyle for way too long!