Mid 70s with sunny skies, high 80s with 60% humidity, 60s with scattered thunderstorms….Michigan summers can keep us guessing and anything is possible! With such unpredictability, it can be tempting to simply plan to hit the gym for your weekly workouts, but I encourage you to take your workouts outside when you get the chance. There are many benefits to an outdoor workout:
It’s good to sweat. It is important to get our bodies outside of the AC and into the natural humidity of the day. Yes, it can be hot, sweaty, and uncomfortable at first but your body will soon begin to thank you for the change in temp. Sweating is the body’s natural form of detoxification (goodbye juice cleanses!) and getting rid of unnecessary sodium. For women this is especially important because it will increase the amount of calcium retained in bone tissue. Sweat also increases endorphins and amount of calories burned during a workout. Don’t be afraid to sweat it out!
Vitamin D. Our skin absorbs vitamin D from sunlight that increases bone, muscle, and immune system health.
Make your body adapt. Working out on a stationary bike or treadmill (while both have benefits!) do not provide variety for our bodies to work through. Outside on the trail or neighborhood there are twists, turns, hills, etc that create another layer to our workouts that cause our bodies to engage both large and small muscle groups in a manner we would not on level ground.
Warm, sunny months are few in Michigan – don’t miss out on the benefits of taking a workout outside!