We all know that exercise is good for us. Many Therapists in Virginia Beach forget that exercising outside can have a positive effect for your overall mood. As the end of summer draws near, I’ve been soaking up every last bit of the outdoor sweat life by doing my daily workouts on my back deck. For me, it’s been a great change of pace. Here are 5 key benefits of outdoor exercise:

1. Vitamin D Most of us are stuck inside an office all day, missing out on sunshine and its key mood-enhancing nutrient, Vitamin D. By taking your workout outdoors, you you’ll be doubling up on the mood-boosting benefits by getting both Vitamin D and the feel-good neurotransmitters released during exercise.

2. Time: It’s an obvious time saver when you eliminate driving to/from the gym from your schedule and just have to step out your front door for your workout. You can use that extra time to try a new recipe, spend more time with your family, or just get in some quality “me” time!

3. Cost: If you’re looking to cut down on some costs but still want to maintain your fitness goals, taking a break from the monthly gym fees + exercising outdoors might be just the ticket. If you don’t have an outdoor space to exercise at your house, you can always take your workouts to the local park or beach.

4. Creativity: When you have limited or no exercise equipment available outside of the gym, it forces you to get creative. Maybe you’ll go for that run you’ve been talking about. Or look up a new HIIT workout to try (you can find any type of workout you want on Pinterest).  There are tons of body weight exercises that are just as (maybe more) effective as using weights/machines. Get out of your comfort zone!

5. Self-Esteem: Exercise is great for your self-esteem in general, but working out outdoors can be even better. While you’re exercising outside, you won’t be comparing yourself to everybody else you see at the gym, wasting time waiting for a machine, or feeling self-conscious that everybody’s watching you. You’ll feel empowered and proud of yourself for finding the self-motivation to complete a workout all on your own!

You’ll notice these benefits even if you swap out just one of your regular gym workouts for an outdoor sweat session each week. If you’re like me + lucky enough to have an outdoor space to exercise at your gym, that’s even better! When it’s freezing cold in a few months and we’re all stuck inside, I promise you’ll thank me for getting that outdoor time in now.