Hiking is a great form of exercise for your mind and your body. It has been known to reduce anxiety, increase the use of creative and problem-solving skills, and have a positive impact on your overall health. Below we will elaborate on all of the wonderful benefits.
The Benefits of Hiking
This outdoor activity provides many benefits and has a truly positive impact on the mind and the body. Below are the many benefits of going for a hike.
Going for a hike is one of the most natural ways to combat stress. It is truly amazing that simply being outside in nature will significantly decrease stress levels. Every time I am feeling stressed, I go for a nice stroll to calm myself down and it works every time. In addition to being outside in nature, being able to get away from the hustle and bustle of the world for an hour or two will be extremely therapeutic too. Anything you can do to mitigate stress levels will be extremely helpful to your mind and body health. It is a natural way to get rid of stress and clear your mind.
Aside from stress, it has many other mental health benefits. For people suffering from depression, it might improve their general outlook on life. The diverse scenery a hiker sees during their hike might help the hiker feel less inclined to over-analyze their negative emotions. It should help to naturally combat those anxious feelings that often go hand in hand with depression.
It is incredibly beneficial to your physical health. Hitting the trails is an amazing form of cardiovascular fitness. It is especially helpful if the trail route includes hilly terrain. Doing any type of uphill exercise will increase your heart rate and you will burn calories faster. It is unquestionably one of the most underrated cardio workouts out there. By using a simple tool like a fit bit, one will find that an hour-long trek is a fun, beneficial way to burn a substantial amount of calories. It definitely beats staring at the walls in a gym.
The Enhancement of Creativity and Problem – Solving Skills
A nice rigorous stroll will stimulate the brain and certainly boosts creativity. You should literally “take a hike” if you are feeling like you are lacking inspiration, focus, or motivation. The time you spend on the stroll is completely up to you. There is no magical amount of time spent that will suddenly give you a burst of creativity. As the hiker you get to decide what you need from it, you are in complete control. Maybe you only need 30 minutes to clear your mind and gain inspiration, maybe you need 2 hours. Having no time limit while adventuring is without a doubt one of the best parts.
How It Can Be Beneficial for You
Along with saving your physical health, it can also save your mental health. If you suffer from anxiety and have tried everything in the book to minimize symptoms, you are not alone. You have undoubtedly tried everything in the book going to the gym, taking art classes, meditating. Clearly, it is time for you to try something else, so why not take a hike.
Try to mix up your routine to keep things interesting. If you wake up feeling groggy, a nice hour-long stroll may give you the energy boost needed without the coffee. There is something to be said about the morning air and the silence. Do you tend to lack inspiration and creativity towards the end of the day? Before you give up altogether, try an afternoon adventure. Some days it may take longer to get your motivation for creativity back and that is completely fine. Above all, you need to be patient with yourself.
- First Aid Kit
- Shoes (sandals, boots or tennis shoes)
- A small amount of food
- Rain poncho
- Water Bottle
- Navigation system
- A swiss army knife or some type of multi-tool
- Proper clothing
According to this site, you should bring a reliable and generously sized backpacking backpack along with your trekking. In the backpack, you should be able to fit all of the other necessities listed above. It should be noted that a waterproof backpack is probably your best bet.
First Aid Kit
Having a first aid kit with you is definitely important. If something were to happen while you are on your adventure you can feel safe knowing you have your first aid kit on hand. In addition to helping yourself, you may need to help a fellow hiker who does not have a first aid kit. Purchasing a prepacked first aid kit is your best bet because it will contain all the essentials of a first-aid kit includes pain relievers, bandages, sunscreen, etc.
Hiking shoes come in many different forms. In addition to boots, there are also sandals and tennis shoes. All three shoe types serve a purpose for different situations. If you are in a beachy area you are obviously going to wear sandals.
Small Amount of Food and a Water Bottle
You should consider bringing some lightweight food in your backpack. It is important to stay energized during your trek as it is a rigorous physical activity. You will also need a water bottle. It is especially important to stay hydrated while adventuring.
Proper Clothing/ Rain Poncho
You should always dress for the weather. When the temperature outside is hot and you are going to be on a beach consider wearing a breathable t-shirt and workout shorts. Long pants made out of thick material should be worn when trekking through the woods no matter what the temperature is outside. Long pants will help protect your legs from poison ivy, thorns, etc. In the unfortunate event that it rains, a rain poncho will be needed. You can find rain ponchos that in addition to keeping you dry can also fold up easily and fit in your pocket.
Swiss Army Knife or Multitool
A multitool or a Swiss Army Knife can be useful in many situations. Always, Multi-tools are without a doubt necessary for outdoor excursions.
Last but not least, a navigation system is probably the most important necessity. A navigation system will ensure your safety and sense of direction, especially if you are trekking for a long period in the wilderness.
Pros and Cons
- Combats stress.
- A great form of exercise.
- Can spark creativity.
- Stimulates the brain.
- Certain physical disabilities may prevent you from being able to hike.
Hiking is not for everyone; however, I challenge anyone struggling with anxiety, lack of creativity, physical health issues, etc. to give it a try. Adding it to your life can be a positive, lifechanging experience. It is good for you and your body. Above all, taking care of your health and how to boost your energy level is unquestionably your choice.
Always, consult your physician or a qualified medical professional for exact information before making a decision on changing your lifestyle or diet depending upon the information given on this article.