The benefits of training outside are immeasurable and you don’t have to ditch your gym equipment and stick to bodyweight movements to reap the benefits of training in the great outdoors.
With many gyms still closed or at a limited capacity, if you don’t have a home gym, this is a great option to keep your workouts going strong until things get back to normal. It is also a great addition to training in your home gym if you’re looking to switch up your workouts and experience the difference that outdoor training can make.
Higher Performance and Boosted Mood
Getting in your physical activity outdoors is shown to lower blood pressure and reduce stress, it feels less strenuous than similar exercise indoors so you can achieve a higher level of performance. It also reduces mental fatigue and is a mood-booster. The sunshine not only enhances your body’s vitamin D production, it also means that you don’t have the fluorescent lighting of the gym that can make the gym environment feel like work.
Workout on Your Own Time
Similar to a home gym, you can access the outdoors whenever you want, so it gives you a lot more flexibility than you would have with a gym membership. There is no traffic or crowded locker room involved in getting outdoors for your fitness regimen. It can also be totally free. Local parks, stairs, basketball courts, and the beach are all outdoors and can be free or inexpensive but make for excellent workout spaces.
More Fun and Creativity
Training outside instead of indoors can also be a lot more fun and get your creative juices flowing. You can adapt your workout to your environment. If you have an incline, you can use it with kettlebell carries for a more intense lower body workout. Sand can give you extra resistance with your dumbbell lunges.
The benefits to opting for fresh-air workouts go beyond the enhanced energy generation in the muscles and oxidation of the tissues from sunshine. Working out outside also helps with insomnia and the fresh air and outdoor movement helps you sleep better. And while variable weather conditions can be seen as a disadvantage, overcoming that discomfort brings rewards. Studies show that getting cold and uncomfortable can boost your metabolism, boost your mood, and improve your immune system. Not to mention, while you literally get dirty doing your workouts outside, you avoid all the bacteria and microbial buildup that inevitably is present in gym environments.
By switching up your workouts and taking them outside, you have more opportunities to train with friends and family that might hold memberships at other gyms. Being outdoors can loosen some of the competitiveness of the gym environment and remind people that all levels of fitness are welcome at the park. It also gives you the opportunity to be out in your community and connect with people nearby. While initially you can draw some extra attention if you pick the local park to work on your kettlebell swings, it can be a good way to practice not caring what anyone thinks of you and maybe you can inspire the onlookers with your dedication to your sport.
How to Take your Equipment Outside
The types of workouts that you can do outdoors are by no means limited to body-weight workouts and can be a good way to switch up your workouts. Typically, outdoor workouts have movements that are less guided and thus improve coordination and require a wider range of motion. This is great for flexibility and mobility.
Kettlebell carries, swings, goblet squats, snatches, and American and Russian cleans can all be easily incorporated into an outdoor training session. Sleds can also be a great piece of equipment to utilize in an outdoor workout and give your spine some relief. Because they are non-load bearing on the spine, sleds can make for an awesome outdoor workout for your core. With this movement you aren’t loading a barbell on your back, so it leaves you less at risk for spine injury. Just like sleds, battle ropes can be used more comfortably outdoors with the unlimited space restrictions.
Olympic bars can also be taken outdoors to change things up and enhance outdoor training. Overhead carries and Zercher carries are great Olympic bar movements to incorporate. But you don’t have to limit your plate training outdoors, clean and jerks, power cleans, hang power cleans, hand power snatches, snatches, front squats and overhead squats can all be incorporated in outdoor workouts for the added benefit of the fresh air and outdoor environment.
As you are planning to take some of your workouts outside, check out our selection of new and used kettlebells, dumbbells, bumper plates and Olympic bars here at Buy and Sell Fitness. We bring our knowledge and experience in providing home gym equipment so that you achieve results at any budget.
Graham, Kelsey. “Get Out! 5 Benefits of Outdoor Exercise.” ACE, www.acefitness.org/education-and-resources/lifestyle/blog/6360/get-out-5-benefits-of-outdoor-exercise/.
Keleher, Mike. 17 Sept. 2020.
“10 Reasons Why Outdoor Training Is Better than a Gym Workout.” Lappset, www.lappset.com/News-and-updates/Blogs-and-articles/10-reasons-why-outdoor-training-is-better-than-a-gym-workout.