Tips for Using the Outdoors to Become More Active This Summer

Are you looking to add more physical activity to your life? Maybe you’re trying to be more fit, lose some weight, or just lead a healthier lifestyle? If so, summer is the perfect time to get started. While it can be intimidating watching all the oh-so-very-toned people go running, biking, and hiking, there’s no need to be reluctant about starting an outdoor exercise regimen yourself. For those of you who want the exercise but don’t like the gym, or love the fresh air but are made a bit nervous by exercising, here are some tips:

Incorporate Activity Into Your Daily Routine by Starting Small

Have you ever wanted to be one of those people who go for long runs on summer evenings? You absolutely can if you start slow and easy. Instead of running, start by going on walks in whatever natural spaces you have available to you. Set aside a few evenings a week, or early mornings, or a lazy afternoon. Grab a friend, a dog, or just go on your own and let your inner thoughts wander. You might be surprised how the fresh air and activity (even low-impact activity like leisurely walking) can improve your mood. Then, after you’ve got a taste for outdoor wandering, working up to running won’t seem so intimidating!

 

Reach for Your Bike Instead of the Car Keys

While not everyone lives in a place that’s conducive to running your errands or commuting to work on a bike, many of us do and have just never tried it. Though it’s certainly helpful if there’s good infrastructure for biking where you live, it’s not absolutely necessary. Small errands like going to the post office can be a good way to ease into using your bike to get around. If possible, biking to work can be a wonderful way to experience the outdoors on a daily basis. It can be an amazing mood booster if you work inside an office all day. Biking more often is an all-around good thing, both for your body and the environment.

Go Camping!

Although camping itself might not seem a like a very physical activity, hanging out in the woods will inevitably lead to other activities, like hiking. All you really need for camping is a tent, a sleeping bag, water, food, and layers of clothing for inclement weather. After a night of hanging out around the fire and waking up breathing in the fresh air, all you need to add is a backpack and a map to go on your first hiking adventure. In fact, you might find you love the great outdoors so much that you start going on camping and hiking trips regularly. Hiking is great for developing our personal fitness.

It isn’t hard to start working on your fitness this summer. By slowly incorporating activity into your daily routine and by focusing on appreciating the outdoors, it’s way more fun to get your summer exercise when you’re not stuck in a hot, stinky gym. Bringing the outdoors into your life is an exciting way for you to get more fresh air, energy, and exercise. That’s way better than staring at the TV on the exercise bike.

You’re Never Too Far From… Being Active, at Belmont Lake Preserve. One of North Carolina’s top Active Lifestyle, master-planned communities.