Why training in nature is essential to our wellbeing

LIFESTYLE | by DI WESTAWAY | 15 Mar '17

Have you ever noticed how fantastic you feel after a long distance walk, even when you had to drag yourself outside to do it?

From our experience we know that there is something truly magical about immersing ourselves in nature, and now science has proved why training in nature is absolutely essential to our wellbeing.

Research from Nippon Medical School in Tokyo shows a nature walk changes blood flow in the brain to a state of relaxation and increased the number of natural killer cells the body produces to battle infection.

 

Walking in nature also:

  • controls depression
  • improves athletic performance
  • improves immunity and memory
  • reduces anxiety
  • helps battle colds and flu
  • makes you happy
  • speeds recovery time after sickness
  • protects against cancer

 

So how does it work?

Our brain gently registers the wind in leaves and the sound of the waves revitalizing a fatigued mind. And phytoncides, the olfactory-provoking chemicals that trees naturally secrete, reduces stress hormones.

And they can be cancer-protective: the more forest around you, the lower the rates of lung, breast, uterine, prostate, kidney and colon cancers.

We also know that long walks nourish mind, body and spirit in addition to all the benefits mentioned above.

 

The Benefits of the Long Walk for the Body:

  • Improves aerobic capacity for more efficient oxygen intake
  • Your body burns fat and sugar more efficiently while you’re walking
  • You'll learn to pace yourself so you can keep going all day without getting tired
  • Your body will learn to be more relaxed, the benefit of which is immeasurable
  • You'll become a  master of your body, and be able to accomplish any goal you set for yourself

 

The Benefits of the Long Walk for the Mind:

  • You will learn to focus and relax your mind
  • You can enjoy yourself and your surroundings
  • You will learn patience as you walk longer distances
  • You'll learn to use your mind to overcome adversity
  • You'll become a master of your mind, and be able to accomplish any goal you set for yourself

 

So find a long distance endurance trek that tickles your fancy, and commit to it. Australia has some of the BEST long distance Coastal nature treks in the world.

Training in nature is truly the best medicine for your health and wellbeing. 

 

- Di Westaway, CEO, Wild Women On Top

 

 

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