Hike Up the Weight Loss BenefitsPosted: Jun 29 in Getting Active by Staff
Medical weight loss presents an opportunity for self-renewal. It is a chance at a fresh start with diet and exercise; a fresh start that is coupled with ongoing support, accountability and encouragement. Exercise is a fundamental component of any successful weight loss program, but that doesn’t mean that you need to spend long hours at the gym. To maintain your weight loss you’ll need to make changes to your lifestyle, and this includes finding ways to stay active while enjoying yourself. With all of the natural respites surrounding Fayetteville, DeWitt and Syracuse areas, there is no reason to stay inside—especially not during the summer months.
Weight Loss the Natural Way
There is a wide range of evidence supporting the idea that spending time outdoors is good for your mental and physical health. Researchers at the University of Michigan looked into the benefits of taking walks outside, particularly through wooded or natural areas. Exercise in general is linked to certain health benefits, like increased energy levels, reduced risk of mental health problems like depression or anxiety, and improved sleeping habits. When you take your exercise routine outdoors, many of those benefits are amplified.
Specifically, researchers found that exercising in natural environments, like parks or forest preserves, can offer the following benefits:
- Reduce risk of depression
- Enhance positivity and improve overall outlook
- Improve focus and ability to concentrate
- Strengthen the immune system
You don’t need to take on challenging trails to get these benefits. Walking outside at a brisk pace—the same as you would do on a treadmill at the gym—is plenty to give you the benefits listed above. There are actually a few places around the central New York area where you can go for a nice walk on a trail, including Green Lakes, in Fayetteville, as well as Chittenango Falls, in Cazenovia. These trails are accessible all year round, but it is a good idea to head out there during the summer when you aren’t going to find snow on the ground.
If it is your first time heading out to the trails, make sure you go prepared. Bring a cell phone, a flash light and plenty of water. Stick to the trails at all times, too. Even if you don’t think you’ll get lost, sometimes the areas off the trails aren’t as safe, or be may prone to wildlife encounters. Start with smaller hikes first and work your way up to more challenging hikes. Hiking is a popular hobby for a reason. Being outside and hiking the trails is both invigorating and exciting. If you are having trouble finding an exercise routine that speaks to you, then you may want to give hiking a try.