Spending time outside has numerous benefits for our physical and mental health. One of the most obvious advantages is the opportunity to get fresh air, which can help improve our respiratory system and increase our oxygen levels. The air outside is typically less polluted than the air inside, which can be especially beneficial for those with allergies or asthma. Additionally, being outside allows us to get some much-needed vitamin D from the sun, which is essential for maintaining strong bones and supporting our immune system. Studies have also shown that vitamin D can help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Another advantage of being outside is the opportunity for fellowship and social interaction. When we spend time outside, we have the opportunity to connect with others, whether it’s through playing sports, going for a walk, or simply sitting and enjoying the scenery. Social interaction has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health, and spending time outside with others can provide a sense of belonging and connectedness. This is particularly important for individuals who may be feeling isolated or lonely.
Finally, spending time outside can also help reduce stress and promote relaxation. Being surrounded by nature has a calming effect on our minds and bodies, and can help reduce feelings of anxiety and stress. Whether it’s taking a hike in the woods, sitting by a lake, or simply spending time in a garden, being outside allows us to unplug from our hectic lives and connect with the natural world around us. In today’s fast-paced world, it’s more important than ever to take time to slow down, breathe, and enjoy the benefits of being outside.
I tend to feel like my walks need to be “calorie burning”, or lengthy to be worth the time, and that’s not the way to look at it. It all adds up. Ten minutes outside is better than NO minutes outside! I’m challenging myself to get outside during the day, even if it’s a short, 10 minute walk down the street and back. I’m logging my time with my fitness watch to keep me honest with myself! Feel free to join me!