Getting outside during winter, facing those icy sidewalks, and bearing the wind chill factor can make curling up with a cozy blanket and a mug of tea seem like the only option. But the cold weather doesn’t have to keep you from enjoying the physical and mental benefits of time outside. Here are six reasons why you should throw on your favorite jacket, enjoy the warmth of a big scarf and beanie and head outside—rain, snow or shine.
Your Mind Will Feel Cleansed By Some “Forest Bathing”
Well beyond a momentary mood boost, being exposed to the outdoors and breathing in the fresh air is one of the best remedies for the winter “blahs”. In Japan, the idea has been coined “forest bathing”—referring to the wellness benefits of spending time with Mother Nature (don’t worry—it doesn’t involve actually getting into the water!). It’s simply about taking time out to slow down, reduce your tension, connect with nature, sharpen your thinking, and take a deep breath.
Your Winter Workout Will Be An Energy Pick-Me-Up
During a time when you might feel more inclined to hibernate, exercising outdoors burns more calories, strengthens your heart (since it’s working harder to distribute blood throughout your body), and limits the seasonal slowdown of metabolism. So, while you might think the crowded gym is the only place left for your workouts during these cooler months—simply layer up appropriately, pack a favorite on-the-go essential, and explore nature’s gym. Oh, and snowball fights count as exercise too!
Absorbing a Little Sunlight Will Do Wonders
When the days are shorter and you’re feeling trapped inside, seeing a little sunlight can work wonders on both your headspace (it boosts your mood) and can encourage your body to produce more vitamin D since it gets made by the body when our bare skin is exposed to ultraviolet radiation from sunlight. Even if you can’t synthesize as much of this crucial vitamin between November and March—take off those gloves for a few minutes, because every little bit of sunlight helps.
You’ll Breathe In Immune-Boosting Compounds
During winter, your home is more tightly sealed than ever, meaning less fresh air is flowing. So, even though you’ve worked hard to remove toxic household and chemical-laden personal products, there is a greater chance of trapping germs inside. When you get outside in nature—leaves, pine needles, tree trunks, and the thick bark of some trees emit a natural kind of aromatherapy in the form of terpenes that are known for helping to bring the body back to balance.
Gets Your Creativity Unstuck & Flowing Again
Have you ever noticed how a walk outside can restore your waning attention and energy? That’s because spending time surrounded by nature is intrinsically restorative, which is why nature’s ability to help you slow down and focus inspired our pocket-sized Calm & Centered CBD Roll-On for wakeful calm. Lace-up your sneakers, tune out the day-to-day “to do” list and bring focus to the goals and projects that really matter to you—especially the creative ones.
Sleep Well Again
A lack of outdoor time could be one of many habits keeping you from a deeper sleep. Too little natural light during the day confuses your internal clock as well as the hormones that prep your body for sleep many hours later. Getting outside and basking in the natural light can help reset your circadian rhythm, which, combined with your go-to nighttime CBD staple, helps you fall asleep faster and sleep more deeply at night. Plus, it’s one of the best productivity hacks we know!Whatever the weather and no matter if you live in a city, by the beach, or near the woods—getting outside is important for your wellbeing all year round. Put simply: we need exposure to green spaces, to breathe in some fresh, crisp air, and to hear the surround sounds on offer in nature. And remember—there’s always hot chocolate, apple cider, and cozy blankets waiting for you when you’re done reaping the benefits of exploring in the cold!