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We all appreciate that any form of exercise is better than no exercise. However, how often do we weigh up the pros and cons of exercising outdoors as opposed to indoors?

Going to the gym certainly has its advantages; it is air-conditioned, it is convenient and it is predictable; you don’t even have to worry about the British climate or dark nights. Why take your workout into the outdoors when you can enjoy all of the above advantages? Well…, numerous studies suggest that exercising outdoors offers so much more than just a blast of fresh air.

For a start, if your goal is to burn calories and lose weight, then an outdoor exercise regime will help you to achieve this more easily. Slopes and uneven ground make your body work harder and subsequently burn more calories; to adapt to the varying terrain, your body needs to use different muscles with every step. However, if weight loss isn’t your goal, perhaps I can tempt you outdoors with some other arguments?

Exercising in a natural environment has a much greater positive effect on our mental health than exercising indoors. Studies have shown that it can lead to a decrease in tension, confusion, anger and depression. What does increase, are our energy levels and productivity.

Whatever your motivation, why not incorporate some time outdoors?