Hiking is a rewarding activity for various reasons, but did you know it’s one of the best ways to improve your overall health? Whether you’re marching across a quiet, tree-lined path or meeting the challenge of a sky-high summit, the advantages of hiking go beyond the visual treats you’ll encounter. A great hike is like a mega-vitamin for your body, mind and spirit.
The Physical and Mental Benefits
Because hiking is an aerobic activity, it can drastically improve cardio-respiratory health. Incorporating hikes into your weekly exercise regimen may lower your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, high cholesterol and even type 2 diabetes. Hiking works nearly every body part, so your muscular strength will improve as well. You can also control your weight by regularly hitting the trails.
Navigating through knotty tree roots and rock formations tests your physical fitness, but it may also improve your emotional well-being. You only need one afternoon on the winding pathways of Arizona’s Watson Lake to feel your mood lift. Used as depression therapy, hiking can create a sense of peace and self-acceptance, which ultimately may lead to more restful nights and happier days.
A Perfect Program for Novices and Experts in Scottsdale
Just about anyone can include hikes into a fitness program. You don’t have to be in top-notch shape to reap the benefits. However, you should start small if your idea of exercise is standing up to find the TV remote. Begin with a slow-paced mile hike, and steadily build your endurance. Once you’re strong enough, attempt steeper hikes that will challenge your bones. This can reduce the loss of bone density.
Your initial goal should be to take a 30-minute, moderately intense hike five times a week. When you’re ready for a more dynamic workout, use hand and ankle weights, dance or run up the hills, or add to your total hike time. Pinnacle Peak in Scottsdale is the ideal place to gradually develop your strength because you can customize every experience on the 1.75-mile trail.
Fun and Fitness for the Entire Family
Children and teenagers also benefit from regular outdoor hikes. By introducing your children to an enjoyable exercise routine, you’re promoting good habits that may last a lifetime. This can reduce the chance of your kids becoming overweight or developing high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes or bone-density problems. Children who are active also tend to sleep better and feel less emotionally stressed.
A hiking adventure could be just what you need to feel happier and healthier. You may lower your risk for certain cancers and even reduce the threat of early death simply by lacing up your shoes and visiting nature. When you’re ready to feel the crunch of the earth, head to Camelback Mountain or any other climbing trails in beautiful Arizona. You’ll take in some astonishing sights while giving yourself the gift of good health.
Hiking is not only about taking care of our health, but about taking care of our environment as well. A great habit to have when hiking is bringing a reusable bag or bucket for collecting trash (especially plastic) and then disposing of it in a recycle bin. We should always stay on the trails so we do not disturb the habitat of wild creatures. Enjoy!
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