29 Apr

5 Great Reasons to take your Workout Outside

Do you struggle to find the motivation to get to the gym now the sun is shining? If so, here are five reasons you should ditch the commute to the gym and take your workout outside.

1) Improves the quality of your sleep

If you struggle to drift of at night, or you are hitting that snooze button like a daemon come morning, you may benefit from venturing outside for some fresh air and exercise. Exercise helps people sleep better due to a couple of reasons. Firstly, if you put physical stress, such as exercise, on your body, your brain will compensate by increasing the amount of time you spend in deep sleep.  Secondly, exercise causes a rise in body temperature which subsequently drops once your workout finished. This drop in temperature makes it easier to fall asleep. Increasing your exposure to sunlight helps regulate your body temperature rhythm which makes it easier to sleep better.

2) Reduces Stress and symptoms of depressions

While your gym may be well ventilated, it is likely that you are breathing in a lot of recycled air, especially at peak times. Being outside in the fresh air creates greater feelings of positive energy, and combined with the endorphins released during a workout, you will feel much more relaxed after your workout. Studies have found that those who regularly favour the park to the gym performed better in the office or classroom and had greater energy levels throughout the day.

3) You burn more calories

You will be amazed at how quickly time flies when you take your workout out into the great outdoors which means you will likely exercise for longer. Often we find ourselves stuck in a bit of a fitness rut when your body knows exactly what to expect from your structured gym programme so by moving your training session outside you will help combat workout boredom. It has also been found that if you are distracted by the environment then you are less aware of your exertions, thus exercising for longer periods of time.

4) Your immune system will improve

Studies have found that the air circulated in a gym is five times more polluted then outdoor air. And while I am sure your gym is cleaned regularly, it has also been found that gym equipment is a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Picking up any of these bugs can be avoided by washing your hands regularly and wiping down your gym equipment before and after use, however it may be easier to take your workout to your local park and top up on your vitamin D levels instead.

5) You will save money

Let’s face it, your gym membership is not cheap with the average monthly cost sitting at £50. So unless you are attending three or more times a week, you are unlikely to be getting the best out of your membership. Also consider how long it takes you to travel to the gym. Perhaps it is easier to cut your fitness, and fuel bills, and run out the front door.

Jilly Wright

BSc (hons) Sports Science, Level 3 Certificate in Advanced Personal Training, Boxercise Registered Instructor, Certificate in Pre and Post Natal Exercise


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