How to Safely Exercise Outdoors

More and more people are joining gyms in an effort to lose weight and tone up, but instead of exercising at a gym, why not stay home and exercise outdoors? Exercising outdoors will not only save you money and time, but will allow you to experience nature and see some sights that you might not otherwise witness. This article gives you three tips if you are considering starting an outdoors exercise program.

Pay Attention to the Weather

One of the most important considerations to keep in mind when exercising outdoors is the weather. For people who are just beginning an exercise program, this is especially important. For best results, try to exercise during the time of day when heat and humidity levels are at their lowest–for some locations, you may need to exercise at six in the morning in order to avoid excessive temperatures. Exercising during periods of intense heat and humidity can lead to dehydration, heat stroke or even death. Cold temperatures can also be dangerous for people who are interested in exercising outdoors. During periods of extreme cold, be sure to wear comfortable clothing that protects all parts of your body from the elements. Exercising in the cold without the right clothing can lead to frostbite and other serious conditions.

Start Slowly

When exercising outdoors, it is important to remember to start slowly. Exercising outside is much different from exercising at a gym in that at a gym, where you always know what is coming. When exercising outdoors, you may not always be prepared for a large hill that will increase the difficulty level of your workout. Many people decide to use a heartrate monitor when first starting to exercise outdoors. This is a piece of equipment that accurately determines your current heartrate, and can be purchased for anywhere from $50 to $150. Ideally, beginning exercisers should have a heartrate between 100 and 120 beats per minute. If you aren’t willing to spend this amount of money on a heartrate monitor, you can use a technique called the “talk test” to determine if you are working in the right heartrate zone. The talk test is as simple as it sounds–if you can sing, talk or laugh with some effort but are not too uncomfortable, then you are working in the right heartrate zone.

Exercise with a Friend

Finally, when exercising outdoors, you may want to consider bringing a friend along for the ride. Exercising with a friend will not only make the experience more enjoyable, but will also be helpful in the event of an emergency. Finally, be sure to choose a friend that is at the same level of physical fitness as you, otherwise she may become bored with the routine. Or what’s worse, you may feel required to increase your comfort level to keep up with your partner.

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