Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Tip Tuesday: Nature's Gym

When spring  started to show itself I decided that I wanted to forgo going to the indoor gym to workout and do all of my workouts outside this spring and summer. My intention was for this to be making me "real world" fit, but I didn't fully comprehend the entirety of the benefits right away. 

According to the book Your Brain on Nature working out in nature is like exercise squared. Not only are you exercising your body you are exercising your mind. 

Combining all the brain benefits of exercise with the distinct mental benefits of immersion in greenspace-cognitive enhancing and mood-regulating benefits-magnifies them. 

I find there are a variety of exercises to be done in nature, and finding those out fuels creativity. Right now my routine consists of:

-Biking to Cascades Park, about 1/2 mile, park my bike at a tree
-Walking or jogging up Cascades hill
-Breaking between runs up the hill to do sit-ups, push ups, or other aerobic exercise at the top of the hill (This in my opinion is one of the best views in Jackson, not only can you see downtown, you can see the entire park!)
-I continue the walk/run through what I like to call the majestic part of the park, it takes me through a large open space, and through a small wooded area. Along the way I find rocks that weight about 5-10 pounds and do bicep curls with them
-Once I make it back around full circle I jump back on my bike and sometimes explore new neighborhoods or ride home

Once is all said and done I've "played" for about 45 minutes to an hour, enjoyed some exploration, and gotten some exercise. The best thing is there are always new areas to explore and new things to try. Try making your own routine, it's guaranteed to spark your creativity. 

By doing this I am breathing in lots of fresh air, working out my body in a natural way, and bringing myself closer to nature. PLUS it doesn't cost a thing.