You've been cooped up (literally) all spring and can't wait to head outside, now that summer is finally here. Not only can spending time outdoors help boost your mood, but sunlight also improves your body's ability to make Vitamin D, which in turn benefits your immune system. Despite your excitement, though, the thought of getting moving again after months in quarantine may seem challenging. Here are a few ideas for fun ways to stay active when you head outside:
Take a walk. As simple as it seems, a brisk stroll can do your body a world of good. Walking for at least 20 minutes a day, five days a week, can improve immune function and reduce your risk of getting sick, research shows. Walking five to six miles a week also can help prevent arthritis and strengthen the muscles that support joints in the knees and hips. And, the American Heart Association reports that taking regular walks can help lower your chances of heart disease. Wearing an activity tracker can help you meet your wellness goal to get in your steps each day.
Climb the monkey bars. Who says playgrounds are just for kids? You can use those slides, balance beams, and swing sets to build strong muscles! Jog a lap around the park to warm up, then knock out some pull-ups on the monkey bars. Next, try a dozen push-ups against a park bench, then flip around for a set of tricep dips. Want rock hard abs? Lean back in a swing with your legs slightly elevated, so your body forms a "V." Open and close your legs, alternating crossing each foot over the other, to engage your core. The possibilities for playground exercises are endless, and it's less expensive than the gym!
Go for a bike ride. Remember when you were growing up, and you rode your bike through the neighborhood for hours on end? Recapture those memories by strapping on your helmet and cruising through your subdivision or take a ride on a nearby bike trail and enjoy the scenery. If you're looking for something more intense, find out whether your area has a local cycling club, or set a goal for yourself to train for a race.
Toss a Frisbee. Whether you head to the beach, the park, or a quiet cul de sac, tossing a Frisbee with a friend is a great way to get cardio exercise while having loads of fun. You don't even need to be very good. If the disc falls short of its target, you have an excuse to run and pick it up! Feeling competitive? Put together a team for an intense round of Ultimate Frisbee and work up a sweat. You can find the rules of the game here.
If it's been a while since you worked out regularly, you may experience mild muscle soreness after being active outside. To help reduce pain in your muscles and joints, roll on Simply Soothetm hemp oil balm over sore areas and massage into your skin. The balanced combination of all-natural extracts includes terpene-rich organic hemp oil and skin-nourishing elements, like honey, coconut oil, and meadowfoam seed oil. When applied topically, Simply Soothe can provide temporary relief from pain and inflammation to support your active lifestyle.
So, what are you waiting for? The great outdoors is calling, and it's time to go outside and play!