Running outdoors is calming, happiness-inducing, and it’ll get you on the road to a fitter lifestyle. And there’s a lot to be said for the variety you get when we take your workout outside. One study showed that just five minutes of outdoor exercise can improve your mood and self-esteem, and time spent in nature even has positive effects on memory retention. Plus, you get a necessary hit of vitamin D! And running outside can burn more calories in a shorter amount of time, since you’ve got the extra challenge of a varied terrain and wind resistance.
- Adjust your pace. You’ll want to slow things down a bit when you first hit the road to give your body time to adjust to the new terrain. And don’t be afraid to throw in some active walking recovery — you’re still reaping all the benefits of your workout.
- Take to the trails. Pavement can be hard on your legs and hips, so search out trails, tracks, or grass in your area to soften the blow.
- Jaime shared these wise words about form: “When running outdoors, make sure to keep your chest lifted and shoulders back, focus on smooth breathing, and keep the hands relaxed.”
- Plot your route. Know where you’re heading and how far you expect to go before you start out — since you’ll have your phone handy for your Aaptiv workout anyway, program in a map as well!
Ready to head outside? Here are three of our favorite workouts for running outdoors at every level. So, plug in those earphones and hit the open road.