Words by Mydee Lasquite
When you think of a physical activity that will heighten your senses, improve your overall agility, reflexes and coordination, we always come back to the gym. And gym related fitness can include exhausting activities, believing that it is the best place to be exerting an enormous amount of effort to achieve a physical prowess.
Now, if you fancy the outdoors and get inspired by the calming effect of nature and its bountiful resources, then you are better off challenging your physical strength conquering heights and enjoying depths, hiking or walking outside.
Hiking is an easy way to appreciate nature and offer your mind time to reflect, space to appreciate, and you get to experience the warmth of the sun touching your face. You can hear the whistling sound of the wind rushing through the trees and you get attuned to the earth with every step.
Benefits of Hiking
Does hiking measure up to running or cycling benefits?
The answer is in the affirmative. There are various muscle groups stimulated during a good hike. Your quads, hamstrings, lower leg and hip muscles are activated improve your overall physical strength. Walking is a weight-bearing activity that improves bone density.
Hiking is not a new activity, hiking is not the latest craze. Hiking is the oldest ( together with running) is the oldest form of physical activity. And we have seen illustrations o f our ancestors to be physically fit, and we are even adapting their diet. So what’s not to try with this century-old activity?
Here are the major benefits we get from hiking:
Hiking is a full-body workout. It engages your upper and lower body to sync in motion. BE it your first time or your nth time conquering a trail, you will finish with a boost of adrenaline and that light and warm feeling of being endowed with the beauty of nature.
Check out all of these physical benefits of hiking:
Hiking gives you the benefit to clear your mind. Helps you achieve serenity. Spending time in the outdoors greatly improves a person’s mood. According to a Standford study, the outdoors reduces stress, calms anxiety and eliminates depression.
Spending time with nature has proven time and time again to increase your sensory perception. Fine tune your senses with a breath of fresh air, warmth of the sun and the sound of the wind.
Re-strengthen your relational health by having others join you on an adventure. This could be a trip with a long time friend, reconnecting with a family member, getting to know a good neighbor during a walk or simply testing your survival skills.
Tagging along or joining a friend to do a hike will improve relationships and keep your health in check. Hiking and finding the motivation to get outside can be challenging at times - having an accountability buddy and inviting others around you to get active is good for you, your family and friends.
So, Take a Hike
There are more than 400 national parks and trails across the United States. There should be no better reason for you to conquer the outdoors, enjoy nature, and your health. Lace-up your boots andgrab a pair of our best-selling hiking poles, a friend, bring your snacks and you are all set to have the best time of your life.
Comment below and tell us how you conquer the outdoors?
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Taking care of your physical health is obvious when it comes to outdoor activities; if you’re injured, there is a set limit to how much you can physically do (and a much lower limit for how much you should do.)
Though we don’t always pay attention to them, mental health and emotional health are equally as important. Pay attention to the voice inside your head that is telling you to come down. You will not summit today. That is OK.
I’ve made the choice to dedicate my life to my passion, and that doesn’t come without sacrifice. There are more days than not that not having a wife, a family or an established career can eat away at me. I experience a lot of loneliness because of my choices. I’m 45 years old, and there are days I wonder if I’ll ever have a different response to the questions people ask me. Sitting on a mountain top, tent flap open, sun going down, a majestic aura all around me fills me with inconceivable joy, but it also has its moments of aching solitude.