I know a lot of people who swear by the gym and their lovely treadmill but I’m not one of them. I prefer outdoor exercise as nature is a perfect buff-body training ground. But if you`re still doubting, please, stop ignoring your instincts! I want to draw your attention to working out outdoors because outdoor exercise could be much better for your physical health, mental health and bottom line. Here are 5 huge benefits to blow off the dark, dreary gym and step outside.

1. Outdoor workouts are awesome for your mood

Outdoor workouts can help manage stress. The study conducted in 2010 by the BBC found that even five-minute exercise in the fresh air can improve mood and self-esteem. In addition, fresh air and increased oxygen help release the feel-good brain chemical – serotonin. So the outdoor training session not only helps you keep fit and healthy, but it also can put you in a splendid mood.


2. Exercising outside provides motivating scenery

The beauty of exercising outdoors is the best part of the workout in the fresh air. The scenery makes any exercise much more enjoyable and productive. I think you agree that it`s really so boring to stare at the screen of the treadmill counting down the minutes or miles until your workout is over! Running through different scenery outside means you have a lot to look at, thus, you’re less likely to get bored and, of course, end up exercising for longer.


3. Outdoor exercise helps you soak up the sunshine benefits

Let’s not forget the benefits of sunlight. When the sun hits your skin during the outdoor training sessions, it creates vitamin D which is so important to bone health and metabolic function. By the way, sun exposure increases endorphin production, improves your immune system and helps you sleep better at night.


4. Wind resistance and other outside factors can help you burn more calories

Of course, it may seem easier to hit the gym when your body exactly knows what to expect from your gym machines like the treadmill or stationary bike. The varied landscape of the park might be what your body needs to challenge itself to move in a bit different, more difficult ways.

For example, wind can offer natural resistance. A strong headwind can help you burn more calories because, in this case, you must work harder to overcome the resistance and in turn tailwind can help you move a little faster, it also gives you the chance to burn more calories.

By the way, working out in the cold is considered as one of the most efficient workouts as the body works much harder to regulate its core temperature among the elements. So during such wintry workout session, you`ll burn a few more calories compared to one conducted indoors.

And I`d like to remind you the benefits of running in the cold. Except the opportunity to kill more calories, running in the cold is also good for your cardio health and slows down the aging process. But don’t forget that a cool winter workout plan should include both resistance training and cardio.


5. Going outdoors give you the chance to save money

Outdoor workouts are free! You can use your neighborhood or community parks to exercise. You may not notice it at first glance, but parks have great equipment that will help you tone muscles. For example, you can simply use a bench to do triceps-dips or a set of monkey bars to add some pull-ups to your workout routine.

Would you like to try exercising outside? Now you realize why I like outdoor workouts so much and see how many benefits you can get if you change the place where you work out and have much better contact with nature!

This is a guest post by Helen Rogers.

exerciseHelen Rogers is an editor of http://thecrossfitshoes.com/ She helps people get stronger. She shares running and sports questions, beauty tips. All her stories are result-oriented and make her readers become healthy, wealthy and wise.