Health Benefits of Hiking and Trekking

It gives you an occasion to get out of the hustle of the city and robotic world, explore nature, and get some much needed “ME” time.

Strengthens your heart – Long distance walk on uneven paths increases heart rate. Steady yet increased heart rate improves the circulation of blood to your muscles and brain. According to research, walking 5 miles a week is enough to reduce your risk of heart attacks strokes and heart failure by 31%.

Increases metabolism – Even a small hill will intensify your heart rate and burn extra calories. President of American hiking society says a 5% to 10% incline equals a 30% to 40% increase in calorie burn and a 10 to 15-pound day pack will boost your calorie burn by 10% to 15% while strengthening your lower back muscles.

Sharpen your concentration – Trekking makes you aware of your surroundings and often will have you negotiate uneven terrain, thus requiring you to focus your attention on the task ahead. Trekking also reduces stress, and increases your physical fitness, sharpening your focus more.

Creative and Problem Solving – Research has shown that spending time outdoors increases attention spans and creative problem solving by as much as 50%. When outdoors, you are left with limited resources; thus, when faced with obstacles, you think of improvised and innovative ways of dealing with such obstacles. If you are trekking in a group, the activity also helps you learn to work as a team and find ways to work around problems and obstacles.

Your brain grows – A study in the Proceedings of National Academy of Science shows, that adult who walks for forty minutes three times a week for a year had brain growth in the hippocampus. It is an area of the brain associated with special memory on the average it grows by 2%, which could improve memory retention.

You make new friends – Adding to all the proven health benefits, trekking is also a venue to increase your circle of friends. Being part of the group with like-minded people increases a sense of belongingness and purpose which is great for your emotional well being.

Makes you a Happy person – Trekking is an excellent morale booster has a positive impact on combination symptoms of stress and anxiety. According to American Hiking organisation endorphins released by your body during walking can lift your soul and keep them there for a long time keeping your brain as healthy as your body. Endorphins are chemicals processed naturally by the nervous system to cope with pain or stress, and they often called feel-good chemicals because they can act as a pain reliever and happiness booster.

Keeps your weight under control and increase bone density – With one just hour of hiking or trekking, you can burn up to 500 calories. Regular exercising helps your bones build up a tolerance to impacts and allows them to strengthen and increase in Vitamin D from being outside(required for strong bones).

You will tone your legs, glutes and core – When you walk uphill, you are exerting your legs more than you would do on a uniform surface. And when you head downhill, your quadriceps and knees work more to stabilise your body.

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