Did you know your health and the health of the planet are directly linked? Or, that people living healthier lifestyles consisting of exercise, rest, and healthy eating tend to be happier people? Studies show both physical activity and exposure to nature are known to have positive effects on physical and mental health. Exercise is an important tool in combating many health problems as well as reducing our environmental footprint.
Get Your Exercise:
Have you ever heard of Plogging? Well, if you haven’t it is a new term that people are using for picking up litter while jogging. It is a great way to combine healthy activity while helping our planet. Exercise reduces stress, builds stamina and improves your overall well-being. Exercise can also increase concentrations of norepinephrine, a chemical that can regulate the brain’s response to stress. Walking to the grocery store, taking your bike to and from work or school, reduces your carbon footprint while maintaining health. As we care for our bodies, it is natural that we give more care to our planet. Here are some additional benefits to exercise.
- Exercise releases endorphins, which create feelings of happiness and euphoria.
- Involvement in structured exercise has shown promise in alleviating symptoms of clinical depression.
- People living a healthier lifestyle find themselves less likely to buy processed or fast foods.
- Outdoor workouts take advantage of increased vitamin D levels.
- Exercise has been shown to alleviate symptoms of ADHD.
- Low impact exercises like yoga have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease.
- Staying fit is associated with a longer life. People who are active for 7 hours a week are 40% less likely to die young.
How can I make an impact:
Tier 1: Global Goodness
- Start moving. At least 30 minutes of walking 5 days a week is a great place to start. Take a plastic bag while you walk and try picking up litter along the way.
- Ditch the car. Bike, walk or use public transportation are all methods of getting around will reduce GHG emissions while keeping you energized.
Tier 2: Planet Protector
- All of Action 1
- Plant a tree (or 10) for exercise. Find a local not for profit in your area that lets you sponsor a tree.
- Have a yard? Grow a garden for exercise. Gardening is actually a great workout and can help offset GHG emissions as plants absorb Co2.
Tier 3: Earth Angel
- All of Action 1 & 2
- Volunteer for exercise. Many local state and federal parks have foundations that bring on volunteers to do projects in the parks such as clearing hiking trails, pulling weeds or watering new seedlings.