I feel like I am the luckiest person on the planet sometimes! I live in one of the most beautiful states and get the prettiest views! Hiking has become a passion, when there is not 50 feet of snow of course. Good ‘ol Colorado! Where it so cold your nose feels like its frozen off but the best part, are the summers! The smells are so fresh and crisp and the mountains are so breath-taking! The desire for me is to get in better shape and be able to hike some of the fourteeners! The places I have hiked so far are just incredible. So much to see and hear. Hiking has not only become a way to exercise but a chance to explore the earth and find oneself. It’s amazing how much one can “hear” from the silence if your willing. To me, hiking is almost like doing yoga or finding that place of peace to meditate. The health benefits of hiking are amazing. It not only helps lose fats and build muscle but it expands the lungs in its air capacity(when you hike uphill it seems to make them burn more than expand….but oh well:) Tones up the calves and strengthens your legs and gives you more endurance. Hiking and running exercises almost every part of your body: legs, knees, ankles, arms, hips and butt, abdominal section, shoulders and neck.While walking, I love to swing my arms or even carry small weights to strengthen them. Hiking helps build endurance and gives you much-needed vitamin D from the sun. One fun thing that I have come to enjoy is looking for Indian artifacts while hiking. I have not found anything of value but did find parts of arrowheads. That was pretty neat. Hiking is so much more fun at times with a pet or others. The quite is my solitude but at times having human interaction is just as great. I hiked this trails and hope to hike some of the mountains!
Here are some health benefits I found while researching the benefits hiking and running.
For adults and children, regular aerobic exercise such as hiking and running leads to:
- Improved cardio-respiratory fitness (heart, lungs, blood vessels)
- Improved muscular fitness
- Lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
- Lower risk of high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes
- Lower risk of high cholesterol and triglycerides
- Lower risk of colon and breast cancer, and possibly lung and endometrial cancer
- Increased bone density or a slower loss of density
- Reduced depression and better quality sleep
- Lower risk of early death (If you are active for 7 hours a week, your risk of dying early is 40% lower than someone active for less than 30 minutes a week.)
- Weight control; hiking burns up 370 calories an hour (154-lb person)”-goodhiker.com