Go Outside, For Your Health

The September Challenge is to spend twenty minutes outside per day.

The weather is changing. The heat of summer is giving way to the calm of autumn. It is a wonderful time to be outside. There are many ways to spend your time outside, and several benefits to be gained.

The Study
A recent study suggests going outside 20 minutes or more per day helps to reduce stress and the stress hormone cortisol. The folks in the study were instructed to go outside in the daylight, somewhere that provided a sense of nature. They were also asked to avoid social media, cell phones, reading, and conversations.

The Benefits
The folks that spent 20 or more minutes outside experienced a decrease in stress. Going outside in the daylight also lets you see the sun. This helps to set your internal clock; the circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm influences just about every function on your insides. You should experience better sleep as a result of spending time in the sun on a regular basis. The circadian rhythm and sleep even regulate your appetite and metabolism. Turning these up can help you lose fat, gain muscle, and be smarter. Not a bad deal.

Outside Ideas
What to do during your time outside? How about a couple 10 minute walks? Right after a meal is a great time for those walks. Try taking a 10 minute walk after 2 of your meals each day. Your blood sugar and insulin will thank you. Your knees, hips and back with thank you as well. And your mood will surely improve. You just might find you have a solution to the after lunch slump in energy.

Other ideas include walking the dog, meditating, and stretching. If you have another good idea, comment!

Your To-Do List
-Spend 20 minutes outside per day
-Incorporate 10 minute walks after 1 or 2 meals
-Enjoy your time outside


Ten Minute Walk

Info on circadian rhythm

Sun and Vitamin D Podcast

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