This is great info! You will love it 🙂
There are numerous benefits of working out in the great outdoors:
1. It’s Harder and More Effective
Studies found that outdoor running/walking is more strenuous than the indoor treadmill/eliptical. In studies comparing the exertion of running on a treadmill and the exertion of running outside, treadmill runners expended less energy to cover the same distance as those striding outside, primarily because indoor exercisers face no wind resistance or changes in terrain, no matter how subtle. The machines are obviously doing some of the work for you. When you run outside, YOU provide the movement. Running outside increases your work load from 2% to 10%!!!!
The same dynamics apply to CYCLING:
Where wind drag can result in much greater energy demands than going the same distance on a stationary bike. That means if you have limited time and want to burn as many calories as possible, you should head outside instead of the gym!
2. It Improves Your Mood
In a number of recent studies, volunteers have been asked to go for two walks for the same time or distance — one inside on a treadmill and one outdoors. In all of the studies, the volunteers reported more enjoyment outdoors, scored significantly higher on measures of vitality, enthusiasm, pleasure and self-esteem and lower on tension, depression and fatigue after they walked outside! And of course exposure to direct sunlight greatly affects your mood.
3. You’ll Do it More Often, for Longer and Be More Active
In another study, those who exercised outside exercised longer and more often than those working out indoors, and were significantly more physically active than those who exercised indoors!
4. Stress Reduction
A few studies have found that people have lower blood levels of cortisol, a hormone related to stress, after exerting themselves outside as compared to inside!
We are blessed to live in Austin, Texas where we can work out outside most of the year, so keep moving!