Have you heard of green exercise? Any physical activity you do outside (ideally surrounded by nature) fits the bill. There is growing scientific evidence showing that our tech-riddled world is increasingly detaching from nature, and that exercising in natural areas improves one’s sense of well-being.
Make the most of the sunny days by getting out into nature and getting your body moving. There are several ways to get green exercise, each with its own benefits.
Biking. Many cities have paths and lanes specifically for bikes—this makes it safer to exercise or commute with pedal power. Want extra motivation? Calculate the amount of gas you’re saving!
Running. Lace up your sneakers and hit the pavement. Lakes and parks are great scenic spots for a run or a jog. Increase the benefit to yourself and the environment by walking, running, or jogging there instead of driving.
Walking. Take a walk to see the sunrise or sunset at a local park. Walk to the corner store instead of driving. Do a lap around the neighborhood. When exercise outdoors is incorporated into daily routines, all sorts of great things happen. You meet your neighbors. You get some sunshine (which increases your vitamin D). You see the beauty of your neighborhood in greater detail.
Hiking. Find nature trails in your area and hike to the waterfall or other scenic areas. Being in nature is when the little miracles happen, such as a seeing a hawk in flight or a shy fox in the woods.
Lead On. When your neighbors see you out exercising, it reminds them that they should get out and enjoy the world, too.
Green exercise can also be incorporated into a healthy, helpful lifestyle.
- Try biking, running, or walking to work
- Volunteer to help build or maintain a trail
- Start or help out at a community garden
Many communities sponsor beach/trail/park cleanups—bring your kids or grand kids to help build a love for the outdoors and a commitment to helping preserve our environment.
Make a commitment to get outside more often and enjoy this wonderful world. Taking care of yourself and the environment is a wonderful combo!
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