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Article Published on: 23 MAR 2023 |

Outdoor exercise has become increasingly popular in recent years, and for good reason. Exercising outdoors provides a range of benefits for both your mind and body that you simply can't get from working out indoors. In this article, we'll take a look at the five benefits of outdoor exercise and why it's good for your mind and body.

Improved Mood

Exercising outdoors has been shown to improve mood and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. Studies have found that spending time in nature and being exposed to natural sunlight can boost serotonin levels in the brain, which is often referred to as the "feel-good" hormone. This can help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety and improve overall mood.

In addition to the mental health benefits, exercising outdoors can also be more enjoyable and less stressful than working out indoors. The fresh air, natural surroundings, and change of scenery can make exercise feel less like a chore and more like an enjoyable activity.

Photo by Kenny Kennethh

Increased Vitamin D

Exercising outdoors can also help increase your vitamin D levels, which is essential for strong bones and a healthy immune system. Vitamin D is synthesized by the skin when it's exposed to sunlight, so spending time outdoors can help boost your levels naturally.

Vitamin D deficiency is a common issue for people who spend a lot of time indoors or live in areas with limited sunlight, and it can lead to a range of health issues. By exercising outdoors, you can help ensure that you're getting enough vitamin D to support your overall health.

Photo by Amauri Mejía

Improved Fitness Performance

Exercising outdoors can also help improve your fitness performance. Studies have found that running or cycling outdoors can lead to greater improvements in cardiovascular fitness compared to indoor exercise.

Outdoor exercise often involves more varied terrain and environmental conditions, which can help challenge your body in new ways and lead to greater gains in strength, endurance, and overall fitness.

Photo by Gabin Vallet

Reduced Stress

Spending time outdoors and being exposed to nature has been shown to reduce stress levels and promote relaxation. Studies have found that spending time in natural surroundings, such as parks or forests, can help lower cortisol levels, which is often referred to as the "stress hormone."

In addition to reducing stress levels, exercising outdoors can also help you feel more relaxed and calm. This can be particularly beneficial for those who struggle with anxiety or stress-related health issues.

Photo by Fortune Vieyra

Greater Sense of Connection

Exercising outdoors can also help foster a greater sense of connection with your surroundings and the world around you. Being outdoors and immersed in natural surroundings can help you feel more connected to nature and the environment, which can be a powerful motivator for continued exercise.

In addition, outdoor exercise can also provide opportunities to connect with others. Joining a hiking group or participating in outdoor fitness classes can help you meet new people and build a sense of community around your fitness routine.

Photo by Dex Ezekiel

In conclusion, exercising outdoors provides a range of benefits for both your mind and body. Improved mood, increased vitamin D, improved fitness performance, reduced stress, and a greater sense of connection are just a few of the benefits that outdoor exercise can provide. So next time you're looking to break a sweat, consider taking your workout outside and experience the benefits for yourself.

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