Tonic Newsletter 19th March 2018 The Great Outdoors


Outdoor activities have many advantages when it comes to weight loss. They burn a significant amount of calories and add enjoyment to your life. Research suggests that exercising outdoors is linked with life-enriching things such as greater vitality, enthusiasm, pleasure, self-esteem, and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It also reduces tension, depression, and fatigue. Importantly, it seems that if you exercise outside, you’re also more likely to exercise longer. If you’re outdoors, breathing fresh air, enjoying natural sunlight, you’re not going to be in a rush to finish and get back inside. And if that wasn’t enough good news, taking your workout outdoors can increase your calorie burn, due to factors such as uneven terrain, wind and fluctuating outdoor temperature. 

Mixing up your routine has another upside; catching some rays means you’re topping up on vital Vitamin D, which has many health benefits, one of which is the role it plays in weight loss. Also, participating in a new activity that includes physical exertion floods your brain with dopamine and serotonin. These chemicals improve your mood and elevate your sense of well being. Cycling is a simple, fun and effective way to get a great workout. Moving your workout from a spinning class to the great outdoors has its benefits; !me passes much faster and in terms of effort it tends to feel easier, due to the distraction of scenery. Cycling outdoors also works the butt muscles, hamstrings, quadriceps, shins and calves harder than indoor cycling. A practical advantage of cycling is that you can use it for more than just exploring parks, trails or bike paths, you can use it as a mode of transport to get from point A to B, such as commuting to work. Move your running workout outside. You won’t just enjoy the surroundings, but will burn more calories, challenge your muscles more and according to some studies may even run faster. The uneven ground works the muscles harder, which, along with wind resistance means you’ll burn more calories

You can increase the difficulty of your run by planning a route that incorporates flat, uphill, and downhill terrain to stimulate as many muscles as possible. All you need is a pair of running shoes designed for outdoor running. If you’re new to running, use a beginners running plan. 

Walking is an easy, simple and effective way to make a huge impact. You can make walking your main workout or just consider walking a bonus. You can go for one long walk or break it down into smaller, more manageable spurts that incorporate it info your daily life. Grab the kids for a family affair or throw on your headphones and take a quick walk around the block before sitting down to your next meal. Not only will you burn some calories and get your blood flowing, studies suggest that getting in some fitness before you eat increases the chances you’ll reach for a healthier dish.

Hiking is another great combination of strength-building and cardiovascular exercise. The big advantage to hiking is it naturally spikes the intensity level of your workout which helps you to burn three !mes the body fat of a flat walk. Although hiking can be challenging and you can get a good sweat going, it’s also relaxing, offering the calming sights and sounds of nature, and providing a break from the stresses of day-to-day life. Hiking works the butt, legs and abs, as well as building cardiovascular endurance. To really target those muscles and burn a ton of calories, choose hiking territory with some hilly terrain. If you’re a beginner start with shorter, relatively easy hikes and build on difficulty and distance as you become more experienced and fit. Hiking is an activity that requires little or no equipment and gets you into the great outdoors.