There are a plethora of benefits to hiking, including improvements to your well-being and health. Hiking not only exercises your body, but additionally exercises your mind and nourishes your imagination. The Balanced Nutritionist is on board to highlight the key benefits you can gain from the healthy art of hiking.
It’s Completely Customisable
Hiking can be tailored to your fitness level and has no limits. You can go as hard as you like or take a more relaxed approach. It’s also an activity which is completely FREE - no need for gym memberships, just use nature as your endless facility.
Great Cardio Exercise
Improves cardio-respiratory fitness (heart, lungs, and blood vessels), muscular tone, and endurance. Hiking is great for increasing core stability and strength, due to the variations of gradients in the outdoors.
Lowers Risk of Disease
Lowers the risk of many diseases such as coronary heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, colon and breast cancer, and possibly other cancers. It’s also proven to increase bone density which is especially important for the 50+ age group.
It Makes You Feel Good
Hiking reduces depression, relieves stress and aids in better quality of sleep. Natural green spaces naturally raise serotonin levels (the happy hormone). The best source of Vitamin D is the Sun. Get outdoors to soak up this immune and mood boosting vitamin. Vitamin D increases sense of wellbeing, and reduces symptoms of seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Excellent For Weight Control
Hitting the trail is excellent for weight control. Hiking burns around 370 calories an hour (154-lb person) which provides highly controllable parameters where you can keep track of calorie intake and therefore weight.
Hiking boosts creativity, providing a stimulating backdrop whilst you exercise. Whether you’re in rolling fields or taking a windswept coastal walk, your imagination will be able to wander alongside you.
Hiking is a great group activity, for all ages. If you like the idea of company along the way then gather up a group of pals and map out your routes. Alternatively, hiking is great as a solitary venture – a time for your thoughts to simmer over a landscape of no distractions which is seldom found in this day and age.
Get That Fresh O2
You’ll be spoilt for fresh air when hiking. There is a much higher Oxygen uptake from exercising outdoors rather than indoors, which subsequently boosts metabolism and revitalises the whole body and mind.
So if you’re keen to reap health benefits in one of the most leisurely and pleasurable ways imaginable, then what are your waiting for? Pack your bags up with the sufficient amount of refreshments and start charting up your routes. Top tip – our TREK Energy Bars are the ideal accomplice to hiking due to the bulk of protein locked into the oats. Be prepared for all kinds of weather and terrain, and ensure you carry plenty of water with you!
The Balanced Nutritionist (AKA Gemma) holds 9 years of experience and a wide range qualifications in health and nutrition. These skills have helped her carve up tailored nutritional and exercise plans to suit individual needs and goals. The Balance Nutritionist focuses on educating people in fitness and nutrition so those looking to can grasp control of their health, and therefore their life as a whole.