June 29, 2017

Is ADVENTURE in your healthy living plan? By Amy Christensen

5 Reasons Adventure Goals Are Healthy for Body & Mind

Are you stuck in a workout rut? Tired of the gym? Find yourself yearning for more excitement and adventure?

It’s totally possible. And even better—it’s good for you in both body and mind!

If you define an adventure as trekking around the world, or a week-long expedition into the backcountry, can feel either inaccessible, or like a long-term goal months (or years) away.

But it doesn’t have to be. Creating and nurturing short-term and daily adventures as part of your fitness goals has enormous benefits of its own.

1.    It’s social. Going for a hike, learning a new sport, or signing up for a local kickball team encourages interactions and sparks conversations. At a gym or a fitness class, we’re often in our own world (even if there are others around.) Creating a social environment where you’re sharing the experience can make working out more fun and less of a “chore” or “obligation.” Get your friends or family involved!

2.    It pushes your limits in new ways. When we dig deep and push our limits, we gain critical self-awareness, which leads to growth and action. We learn that we are stronger and more capable than we thought and we discover skills, talents and abilities we didn’t know we had.

3.    It helps you break out of routine. Routines can feel stagnant, and chances are, you’ve got more than enough between the 8-5 job, car pool schedules and meal times. What you crave is excitement and new challenges. Adding variety or setting a goal to get outdoors and do something completely different can help you break out of that routine and find adventure.

4.    It stretches you mentally and physically. Working out doesn’t have to be all about the number of reps you do, how much weight you’re lifting, or how many miles you ran. Stretching yourself mentally as well as physically offers new perspectives and new experiences, opening the doors for possibilities you may not have considered before. It’s about the temperature outside or how the world looks at midnight camping under the stars.

5.    It helps you build toward bigger adventures. If big adventures are on your bucket list, now is the perfect time to start building towards it. Start small and gradually increase the size of your adventure. Begin with a hike on a local trail, or experiencing a new spice, adding more over time. You’ll find your endurance and experience increasing toward your bucket-list adventure, like through-hiking a section of the Pacific Coast Trail or traveling overseas.

Here’s a bonus reason: It’s just plain fun! What adventures will you explore this winter season?

Amy Christensen is a certified life coach with a passion for adventure and helping women unleash their adventurous spirits. Based in Boulder, CO, her company, Expand Outdoors, focuses on creating healthy, sustainable, and fun lifestyle changes. She most recently launched 31 Winter Adventures, an email series delivering daily adventures to your inbox for 31 days in celebration of the winter season.

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