With the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it’s easy to become stressed, overstimulated, and run down. Many of us spend the majority of our time indoors, sitting in front of a screen (or multiple screens) for the majority of our day. Our society overall is disconnected from earth. When was the last time you’ve spent a couple hours outside?
A great way to get back to your roots is to go hiking. Hiking is beneficial to our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well being. Here are a few ways hiking is important for our health:
- It keeps you present: Hiking stills the mind, allowing you to practice mindfulness and be aware of the breath. It is just you and nature—there is no agenda, no technology, no sense of urgency. Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.
- Puts things in perspective: Being around all the trees, plants, flowers, and animals, really shows us how small we are compared to the grand scheme of things. Nature is beautiful and has so much to offer us, if only we take the opportunity to listen and take in the fresh air.
- Improves mental health: Hiking reduces stress, anxiety and depression and increases our mood and memory.
- Allows you to engage in your senses: Taking in your surroundings gives you the opportunity to see, feel, hear and smell the earth. Feel the dirt beneath your feet, smell the flowers, see the vast shades of greenery, listen to the birds chirping. Nature thrives in harmony.
- Hiking is great for cardiovascular and muscular health: Depending on the incline and distance, hiking is a great way to keep your heart pumping while exercising your quads, hamstrings, calves and glutes. It also helps lower the risk of high blood pressure, stroke, and coronary heart disease.