There comes a time in your life that you might feel like you need to get away from your routine and clear your head. With the busyness of work, the constant responsibilities of home life, and trying to balance all this out can leave you needing some time out for yourself. Some fresh air has been known to help clear your mind and do you a world of good. That’s why hiking is a brilliant activity to take part in to do just that for you. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits.
Physical benefits of hiking
The most obvious benefit is that of a physical nature. Hiking is good for your health, the same way that any other exercise is, that increases your heart rate. Even a short hike can help lower your cholesterol, blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart disease, and prevent diabetes. Hiking can make you strong by working not only your legs but your upper body and core as well. It can be said that hiking is a full-body workout.
Mental health benefits of hiking
Hiking is not only good for your health but it’s good for your mental wellbeing as well. When we talk about health, it’s more than just body strength and cardio we’re referring to, but also mental health. Hiking can help reduce stress by lowering your cortisol levels as well as your blood pressure. This, in turn, means that you reach a sense of calm and peace. When you have a lot going on in your life, a little bit of nature and fresh air also has a calming effect. How much more in touch with nature can you get than by going on a hike? Any negative thoughts and present stresses are released as you take in your surroundings, breathe in some fresh air, and possibly see some wildlife. All this equals a happier you, a you that feels recharged and revitalized, ready to take on other challenges. No more pondering on your past mistakes, your embarrassing moments, or what’s wrong with your life. It’s like you’ve hit the reset button on your life by simply going for a hike and getting your head straight. By walking on uneven terrain you’re using up more energy than walking on level ground, which as a result, will help you sleep better at night. All that output of energy and that renewed sense of calm and peace will ensure that you sleep better than you normally would. We all know how important sleep is, and what role it plays in our well being. When you’re out on a hike and it’s you and nature, you’re able to let go of any built-up anxiety as you meditate and quieten your mind. Surprisingly, studies have shown that by being outdoors regularly and spending time hiking, can surprisingly improve your memory.
As you can see, hiking has countless benefits, both physically and mentally. It’s a phenomenal exercise when you have a problem that needs a solution, but you’re too overwhelmed by your daily stresses to find a solution. Make time for yourself and go for regular hikes and you’ll find how great a tool it is to get your head straight, release stress, and regain much-needed focus. Grab those hiking boots and try it for yourself!