Nature is something so ancient in providing relief of stress, anxiety, and worry. Nature provides a sense of calmness unlike anything else. Exercise is obviously beneficial in many aspects; however, incorporating exercise while indulging in the outdoors provides both the mental benefits as well as the physical benefits.
According to Berman, who conducted a study in Michigan, walking outdoors increases both memory and cognitive function. This is something that everyone can benefit from, including those at Carolina Bay. According to a different study done in Japan, Miyazaki found that walking outdoors can decrease cortisol level as well as heart rate and blood pressure. Cortisol is the hormone that is directly related to stress level, thus this article is stating that one’s stress level can be decreased with a regular activity outside. These specific benefits listed in the articles above can be summarized simply by saying that being outdoors can improve your overall health.
I personally know the benefits of being outdoors and can relate to the decreased stress, heart rate and blood pressure simply by walking outdoors. I take my dog on at least two walks a day, and I know that that is my way to unwind and de-stress. Sure, phoebe, my dog, has something to do with it, but I believe even more so, it is just shear fact of being outdoors. That’s why when residents came to me asking if there could be an organized walking club and/or organized bike club, I said yes without a doubt. You can see in the pictures; residents definitely enjoy the outdoor classes. This past week we took a 4.2-mile bike ride around the cross city trail and the surrounding neighborhood. Residents had a blast just being outside with a group of friends while exercising.
With fall weather finally setting in, it is much more safe and possible for me to do classes outdoors with the residents. In fact, next week and the last full week in October, we will be walking the loop at Wrightsville Beach instead of our weekly neighborhood walk. I think that this change of scenery will be very beneficial and provide a new atmosphere for residents to be active.
Speaking of new atmospheres…
We are excited to be representing Carolina Bay at the American Heart Association walk in Wilmington, NC on October 27th at 10am. Carolina Bay alone raised $2157.00 for the American Heart Association. We are excited to be outdoors, better ourselves, represent out community and help those in need.
For more information regarding the Cape Fear Heat Walk, follow the link below. http://www2.heart.org/site/TR/HeartWalk/General?sid=1071&type=fr_informational&pg=informational&fr_id=3533
Here is your challenge, go outside and walk at least three times this week. See how big of a difference this can make in your life. Take the time to reflect, meditate, explore, ponder and wonder. As Albert Einstein said “The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
As I said at the beginning of this blog, walk outside. Take a deep breath.