Regardless of the season, getting outside and enjoying some exercise is a healthy habit to start. Fortunately, there are endeavors for all ages and abilities to take part in. While being outside is fun, make sure to take proper precautions such as wearing bug spray and sunscreen, even on overcast days. Here are five outdoor activities to enjoy.
Skiing, of course, requires certain weather conditions to be able to partake in the sport. Take advantage of the cold, snowy months to go cross-country or downhill skiing. If you are new to this winter sport, lessons can be helpful as the learning curve to become a competent skier can be quite high. Once you become more confident in your abilities, you can begin making your way from the bunny slope to more advanced trails.
Cycling is a great form of exercise as well as a mode of transportation. Whether you are a cycling enthusiast in Colorado like Kent Thiry scaling large mountains or biking the streets of a flat coastal city, this is a great workout for your legs. Bicycles can be pricey, but since a good bike will last you a long time, this is a worthwhile investment if you plan on using your bike often. In addition to being good exercise, cycling is a wonderful way to experience sights and sounds that you might not notice while riding in the car.
Running is a sport with a relatively low barrier to entry since all you really need are a good pair of shoes and clothes that are appropriate to the weather outside. It is a good idea to wear layers, as you might get warmer than you expect while going for a run. New runners should start slow to avoid injuring themselves, particularly with overuse injuries. Many runners find motivation by participating in local races, which tend to range from shorter distances like the 5k up to half marathons and full marathons. A full marathon is 26.2 miles, so only attempt this after you have been training for a few months.
Not everyone is able to run, but walking is a great workout in and of itself. Find a nice park, a new section of your neighborhood, or a trail off the beaten path to go for a long or short walk. As with all outdoor activities, make sure that you remain aware of your surroundings and let someone know if you will be walking in a remote area.
Many people enjoy swimming because it is a low-impact exercise that still provides many of the same benefits as other aerobic workouts like running and cycling. Swimming is especially popular during the summer because of the warmer temperatures. However, check the forecast prior to going for a swim to ensure that there are no thunderstorms in the vicinity.
Try out one or more of these outdoor activities. Once you find an exercise that you enjoy, you are likely to stick with it throughout the year.