By Elizabeth Colen
Here are a few suggestions to get you out, burning calories and enjoying this spring weather.
Plant a Garden
This time of year is perfect to get out in the yard and get some exercise, while making your yard beautiful. Whether you’re planting a herb garden to use when you’re cooking healthy meals or roses that you can use to decorate your home. You’re actually burning calories while you are working the land. It doesn’t matter what you plant, just get out in the sunshine and soak up that Vitamin D. Not only are you getting a physical workout but gardening is really a great way to calm the mind. Working with the earth can relieve stress, boost your mood and help you stay flexible. All that digging, carrying and pulling will definitely pay off. You not only get to see the fruit of your labor when your garden grows, you also get that connection to mother earth.
Ride a Bike
I use to ride my bike a lot when I lived in California. California makes bike riding easy, not only is the weather good all year but the roads are bike friendly. Here in Charlotte, however, the weather is not always bike riding friendly. Nevertheless, now is a great time to grab a helmet and go. Get on a bike and take advantage of all those scenic trails that Charlotte has provided in your neighborhood. While you’re out enjoying the breeze, seeing the birds and the bees, you can burn about 500 calories in an hour depending on your speed. If you work in the heart of the city – no worries. Charlotte has an awesome bike share program (Charlotte B-Cycle) Uptown. Go ahead jump on a city bike and ride on your lunch break, take in the charming city sights while you are taking care of your health.
Lots of people go walking and that’ great, but try to throw in a hike or two. You will be pleasantly surprised how much you will enjoy it. We know that walking burns calories, but hiking just steps it up a notch. While you are climbing, carrying that backpack, balancing on those rocks, your muscles are engaged and you are working on your balance as well as your stability. You can burn up to 250 calories on an hour hike. Hiking gets your entire body involved. Those muscle are working while you are taking in nature and letting go of stress. Studies have shown that the visual effect of trees are very calming.
Join a League
There are many leagues you can join to keep you active and hold you accountable. You would never let your teammates down. There are many sports of different levels that you can choose from such as, baseball, basketball and tennis. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or expert, there is a place for you. Not only do you get a workout, but you meet new like-minded people who enjoy the sport as much as you.
The key is finding something you enjoy to get you outside and have fun. Live your life to the fullest, stay fit, mind, body and spirit.