Got a case of workout burnout? Hit nature’s gym. Exercising on the beach, in a park or on a trail will challenge you in new ways, awaken your senses, and invigorate your soul.images

Beyond the shear physics of what walking in sand, running over rough terrain or hill climbing can do for the body, the visuals, the texture, even the smells make it a full sensory experience.  Just being outside in nature slows a person down and introduces us to a calmer way of being.


The Perks of Green Exercise

is577034Research confirms what we’ve known all along: An outdoor workout can deliver even more psychological and emotional benefits than pounding the treadmill and any physical activity in nature counts; cycling, horseback riding, gardening, fishing, skiing, hiking, walking etc. Here’s some of what you stand to gain by heading outside.

* Increased productivity:
Frances Kuo, PhD., a researcher and cognitive psychologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign has found that natural outdoor spaces can actually boost your concentration and your patience – which can help put your goals within reach.
* Better Mental health:
A recent British review of studies on the impact of exercising in nature shows that a mere five minutes of outdoor activity can have a significant effect on self esteem.
* Heightened Alertness:
A 2001 review found that green spaces enhanced effectiveness in daily challenges by reducing mental fatigue.
* More Joie De Vivre;
Simply being in nature can trigger peak experiences comparable to a spiritual break through, according to eco-psycholigist John Davis, PhD., of Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado.


- Adapted from Whole Living Magazine, August 2010