Working out isn’t always easy. There are many understandable reasons people don’t exercise as often as they should. One of them is often the simple fact that a fitness club membership can be expensive. When you have bills to pay, justifying an added monthly expense may be difficult.
Luckily, if you have access to the outdoors, you can still enjoy many of the advantages a gym membership offers, without the hefty price. The following points will help you better understand how.
People often join fitness clubs because they enjoy variety. At a gym, you can participate in many different types of cardio and strength training exercises.
The same goes for the outdoors. In the right environment, you can achieve heart healthy workouts through hiking, jogging, walking, and much more. Although you must always prioritize safety when exercising outside, you can also strength train by lifting heavy stones instead of weights, and using thick tree limbs to perform pull-ups and similar exercises. The basic point to remember is that the great outdoors offers all the variety of a gym!
Mental Health Benefits
The environment in which you work out can play a major role in both the effectiveness of your workout and your overall wellness. For example, researchers have found that spending even a little bit of time in green spaces boosts the average person’s mood noticeably.
That’s a good reason to work out in such a space. Again, you already understand that exercising improves your mental health. This positive effect is even stronger when you’re exercising in an environment that also boosts your mental wellness. That’s a unique benefit you certainly can’t get at most gyms!
Additional Physical Health Benefits
Although it may seem relatively obvious, it’s still worth noting that exercising outdoors provides you with much more exposure to sunlight than you would get if you were to exercise at a fitness center. This can help strengthen bones, guard against a wide range of illnesses, and provide your body with essential vitamin D.
That said, you do need to remember to protect yourself from the potential harmful effects of too much exposure to sunlight. If you’re going to be spending a lot of time outdoors, put on sunscreen, even if it’s a cloudy day. Many people don’t realize that sunlight can actually penetrate cloud cover.
You should also remember that this blog isn’t meant to be a criticism of fitness centers. They serve a purpose, and do offer many benefits. However, so does exercising outdoors, which may be the better option if you can’t afford a gym membership or simply don’t live near one. Whether it’s a park, the woods, or your own backyard, if you have access to the outdoors, you have access to fitness.