If you’ve always been a bit of a gym bunny, or a fairweather cyclist, there are several reasons why you should try and embrace the outdoors this summer. Rather than seeing the weather as a hindrance, let the elements challenge you. This will only make you stronger and able to work out in more varied conditions. Exercising outdoors also allows you to get a change of scenery which can be very beneficial for your mental wellbeing. Here are seven reasons why you should consider switching up your routine this summer.
Discover hidden gems
By venturing further than your local gym or park you might just discover hidden gems near you. Summer is the perfect time of year to find cycle routes or hiking trails in your local area. You don’t even need to travel a long way. You’d be surprised what you can find on your doorstep. See if there are any areas of natural beauty you can explore or even take a trip to a nearby town or village. You can enjoy getting in touch with nature and finding out about the local history and culture. Include plenty of physical activity in your itinerary and you’ll return feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.
Switch up your routine
If you’ve not been as motivated recently it might be time to switch up your routine. Exercising outdoors will not only provide a change of scenery, but you can also work out at different times of day. During the summer, it’s cool and light in the early morning and later in the evening, so perhaps you could consider working out at these times instead. It’s important to aim to alternate your workouts as this will prevent you from adapting to a solo situation.
Set different goals
You can also set yourself different goals when exercising outdoors which can be very motivating. These could be related to distance covered, or number of places you’ve visited. There are also plenty of measurable workouts you can do outdoors, such as HIIT circuits. There are several reasons why fitness isn’t all about going to the gym. You can measure your progress in other ways. If you’d like to carry on using equipment to monitor your progress you could invest in a wearable fitness tracker instead.
Improve your mental wellbeing
Several studies indicate that spending time outdoors can improve your mental wellbeing. This is why it’s especially important to make the most of the nice weather. Getting in touch with nature gives you a new sense of perspective and helps to boost your self-esteem. It can be very calming and a great way to relieve stress too. You’ll also get a healthy dose of vitamin D and fresh air.
Let the elements challenge you
Don’t be put off by the weather, instead, let the elements challenge you. The heat and wind can help to increase intensity of your workout. As long as you invest in the right gear, you can exercise comfortably outdoors in almost any weather. Check out these long sleeve performance shirts, for example. Their moisture wicking materials help you to stay cool and dry during the summer and they’ll protect you from getting sunburnt as well. It’s also a good idea to invest in a decent pair of trainers.
Save a few pennies
One of the best things about exercising outdoors, once you’ve invested in some gear, is that it’s pretty much free. There’s no need to pay monthly gym fees and you can perhaps restart your membership in the winter. You can then use the money you’ve saved for your holidays this summer, or put it away for the future. There are plenty of ways you can explore the great outdoors and work out for free so it’s ideal for those who want to keep fit on a budget.
Destress and disconnect
The main reason exercising outdoors is vital for your physical and mental health is because it allows you to destress and disconnect. It will give you the chance to take a proper break from your everyday pressures and clear your mind of cluttering thoughts. You’ll return with the confidence and energy boost you need to take on whatever life throws at you. It’s essential to take the time for self-care and exercising outdoors is a good start. Focus on your overall wellbeing this summer and look for new ways to feel better inside and out. There are plenty of outdoor activities you can try so find the one that works best for you.