The 5 Reasons I Exercise Outside
The 5 Reasons I Exercise Outside
It was really cold out this morning, however, I decided to go for one of my first outside runs of the year. While on my run I was thinking about how much I love having my workouts outside when I am able. And come to think about it, I spent the majority of daylight this past weekend outside. On Saturday, I spent the morning skiing in Ellicottville with great conditions. Then I went for a 2-hour snowshoe up the ski hill and in the backcountry. It was a great long easy workout and was so beautiful with the deep fresh snow. On Sunday I skied hard from 9:00 to 1:00 and then drove home. When I arrived home although cold, it was a beautiful sunny day so decided to get my bike out and go for a quick ride before the sun went down. I did a 30k loop in the great outdoors and it felt amazing. I once again couldn’t help but think how great I felt after cycling outdoors. Unless there are dangerous conditions or terrible weather conditions outside, I choose outdoors when I am able.
Today I thought I would share the benefits that I feel I get from exercising outside.
1.Allows me to live “In the Moment”
I find that when I am outside, I am really present with what is happening all around me. For instance this morning on my first outdoor run of the season, I noticed the chirping of the birds, the sun rising and shining, the call of the doves, my breath, and the nice cool crisp air. I was very present and aware of all of the little beautiful things in nature around me. I just heard a great quote that I thought I would share as it has impacted my thinking recently:
“Celebrate the little things in life as they are actually the really big things”
2.Breathing Fresh Oxygenated Air
I am not sure what it is about exercising outdoors, but I love the feeling of breathing very fresh oxygenated air. Although I have to hit the indoor gym as part of my training regimen, I prefer when able to be outside and breath fresh air instead of the stale and recirculated air that often we breathe indoors. Also, I think of the germs that are spread in an indoor environment vs working out outdoors and there is no comparison. In fact, I often set up my weights or do my routine outside when able (weather permitting) so that I complete my workout outdoors whenever necessary.
3.Great for the Mind
I find that when I exercise outdoors, it puts me in an amazing state of mind. For those that read my blog regularly, you are likely familiar with my running or exercise “mantra”. I find that I typically go through this amazing mind altering mantra when I am outside and close to nature. For those that missed or want a refresher on my Running Mantra, you can access it here: http://kevinbradyhealth.ca/thoughts-that-change-your-mood/
In addition to the endorphins that are released when we exercise, I find that the “feel good” endorphins are multiplied when I do so outside. I typically try to have my workouts in the morning and it is amazing what a fabulous, relaxed and love life state of mind it puts me in ready to tackle the day ahead. For example, I went for an early morning run this morning as the sun was coming up and after completing my running mantra and having my interval workout, I felt amazing going to work.
4.Detoxifies the System
As you likely know, any time we exercise, new cells are generated and old cells are expunged which fights the aging process. In addition, the sweat and bad toxins are released from our system through our skin and breathing exchange which cleanses our system. Once again, I find there is nothing better to cleanse the system and release toxins than exercising in the great outdoors.
5.Close To Nature
It is tough to get closer to nature than exercising in the beautiful outdoors. Whether backcountry skiing in the mountains, cycling, running or simply going for a nice walk or hike, I find I am most connected to life when I am outside. I find getting this close to nature is very therapeutic. I just feel that I am at “home” when outside and close to nature.
Therefore, the next time you have the opportunity to exercise, I would encourage you to do so outside for the following reasons:
1.Allows you to be Present
2.Can Breath Fresh, Oxygenated Air
3.Acts as Mental Therapy
4.Detoxifies the Body
5.Gets you close to Nature
Wishing you and your family a great, healthy and outdoor day,
Update on Giro Sardegna Race
For those that have followed my blog, you know I am racing the Giro Sardegna 6 day cycling race at the end of April again this year with my friends from Milton Cycling Club. So I can be sure that I can complete this grueling cycling race, I have been hopping on the trainer in the basement as much as I can mostly early in the morning (in the dark) or some longer rides on weekends. I am getting a little nervous as the race is less than 6 weeks away. I will keep you posted as I progress in my training.