Science Says We Need To Get Outside More: Here’s Why!
(Source: Paramount Pictures)
It's almost insulting that college students need to take health class in college when it was offered for free in almost every grade level prior.
I sit there, hand propped under my drooling chin as I hear “Adults need at least 30 minutes of outdoor exercise a day” for the fifty-second time. Ok… yeah, yeah… we get it. Let's just move along!
But little did I know that this fifty-plus reminder would come in handy when I actually became a full-fledged adult.
It's hard to get out when feeling suffocated by hours of work, deadlines, household chores, bills, taxes, payments, meals, kids, gossip, finances, and a mountain of other “adult” type items.
There are a million other things to worry about when under the roof, so getting to the outside seems like a job for another day, or year for that matter.
However, sometimes multiple problems can be solved with one quick and easy solution. I know, sounds like a miracle drug, but this prescription is true: get outside! It may save your life and sanity in more ways than you ever imagined.
I just traveled to Wisconsin to visit my aunt and uncle and their new farm. I thought, “Great! This is just what a California city girl needs! Some rolling around with some cows in the mud.”
Needless to say, I was slightly reluctant to go; I would be in a place with no cable and terrible WiFi for a week during a time in my life when I had Internet deadlines to meet. But upon returning home, I not only got a fresh breath of clean air, pollution free air, but a new breath on life as well.
My mom said I had come back with more spirit than a child on Christmas; I had a joy like I was to receive a great gift every second of the day.
My trip forced me to slow down from my hectic lifestyle and take in the world around me. My problems were small, if they even existed at all outside my own overworked mindset. I lost weight, I gained some color in my skin, I no longer felt anxious, paranoid, or depressed, and I smiled more often. I began singing in the shower again, and I even gave out compliments to complete strangers because I wanted to share the happiness I felt.
Being away from the city made me appreciate both its buildings and the land it was built on upon my return home.
If you are like most of the working class, you feel worked into the ground. But it's not even ground you are being worked into, but hard, cold concrete, so escape the cement and plan an outdoor adventure to blossom through the soil. I know, going on a trip during “the busy season” seems just impossible, but it may save your sanity and you can receive the many health benefits I gained on my open-air endeavor.
And for those who have been cooped up like chickens for far too long and forgot what it was like to be outside, here is a step by step list to help your little feet get used to the grass again:
Open A Window
It may be rather silly because you are not actually outside at all when opening a window, but at least the breeze can bring in a welcoming essence of fresh air.
Who ever thought an air conditioner could truly take the place of oxygen? Real air cannot be tamed by anything but your lungs. Maybe the taste of fresh breath will entice you to take the whole bite.
Watch a Fun Adventure Movie
(Source: 20th Century Fox)
Nervous to actually leave the sand and dip your toes in the ocean? Watch a movie instead!
Sometimes an inspiring movie character can motivate you enough to leave your couch and try something new. I know I could face the changing tides a lot easier knowing Ariel shed her fins for legs or Jasmine left her home for a whole new world.
If Carl could move his house with party balloons and explore the jungles of an uninhabited land at the age of 80, then you can sit on your lawn chair for an hour to soak up the sun. You could “climb every mountain” along with Julie Andrews!
Take it Low and Slow
One sure fire way to scare you away from the outdoors is to be pushed into unfamiliar situations. Don’t go wilderness camping for the first time by yourself. It’ll be disastrous!
Start off small. Drink your morning coffee while sitting on the front porch, read a book on a blanket in the grass, or type out your next paper poolside in your apartment complex. Take advantage of the outside seating in restaurants and take a walk after dinner (it’ll boost your metabolism and is great for weight loss too).
Want to go a little bigger? Plan a picnic or BBQ potluck with friends and family. You’ll be having so much fun that you’ll forget about your city troubles.
Find Strength in Friendship
(Source: Warner Brothers Entertainment)
There are many clubs and organizations that challenge people to obtain new hobbies and interests that may be out of your comfort zone.
If your office mates are a bore and won’t support you on your skydiving goal, then it's time to look for some new comrades who will. Outdoor adventures can be scary, but there is strength in numbers, so check your city’s webpage or bulletin for support groups and clubs that can help you get involved.
Plan a Ranch Trip
The image of a ranch isn’t exactly the dream vacation we all aspire to go on. However, a ranch is the best way to experience every bit of outdoors at once under the comfortable guide of an expert.
With someone to lead, seemingly impossible activities become a reality, and pretty soon you are ATVing through mountain slopes, fly fishing by the river banks, or on a yoga horseback riding tour (it’s a real thing! Look it up!). Many ranches even offer massages and spa treatments to help unwind after a long day outdoors.
Life can seem such a burden at times
Each problem seems like a brick being tossed your direction, and soon enough it seems too much to carry.
But the burden is only as heavy as you make it, so pick up your bag of bricks and build a loving home with your experiences and dreams. Most nightmares contain elements of stress (perhaps those found in the city?) so leave the worries behind and learn to love the land you are born into.
Go outside! Not only will your high school health teacher be glad, but you may also find your decision to be a saving grace.
If you are interested in taking a step into the great outdoors connect with us at Top 50 Ranches for more information.