Being outside provides us with an emotional boost, while helping us feel less tense, stressed, angry or depressed. Additionally, sunlight can give our body the much-needed vitamin D.

1. Benefits of Spending More Time Outside

From improved health to improved mood, going outside has many benefits.

Elevated mood

Exposure to sunlight has been shown increase the brain’s release of the happiness hormone serotonin. Besides improving our mood, serotonin helps a person feel calm and focused. Without enough sun exposure, serotonin levels can dip and lower levels of it have been linked with a form of depression.

Strong bones

Getting 5 to 15 minutes of sunlight on your arms, hands and face three times a week is enough to benefit from D-boosting benefits of sun’s rays. Low vitamin D levels have been linked to bone-wasting diseases like osteoporosis so you want to make sure you have abundant reserves of this multi-beneficial vitamin

Reduced energy bill

If you are working from home, by shaking up your routine and working outside will not only break the monotony and benefit your mental health, but it will also reduce your Illuminating Company utility bill as you will consume less energy.

Disconnect from the noise and connect with nature to reconnect with yourself

Science has confirmed with numerous studies the beneficial effect of getting into natural surroundings. It stimulates creativity, reduces anxiety, promotes problem solving, improves our immune system, helps us be more mindful and that’s just the beginning of the story.

2. Signs You’re Not Getting Enough Sun

Surely, you know the dangers of getting too much sun but we often forget about the dangers of not getting enough of it. Besides encouraging the skin to manufacture vitamin D, sunshine supplies the important nutrient nitric oxide, which keeps your metabolism running smoothly and discourages binge eating. If you are gaining weight, it’s time to include regular outdoor activity. Another sign is excessive sweating on your forehead without any apparent reason.

If you are feeling pain in your bones and muscles that seems like arthritis or fibromyalgia, chances are it is merely a consequence of vitamin D deficiency. Calcium and collagen do a great job in nurturing our tissues and bones, but without a proper dose of vitamin D, the process is interrupted. A lack of sunlight can also mess up your circadian rhythm and trigger insomnia, especially if you are exposed to artificial lighting.

3. How To Incorporate More Time Outside During the Pandemic

There are many insanely fun ways to have a good time enjoying the outdoors and without spending money or much anyway.

To begin with, you can walk, run and hike. Biking and rollerblading are also safe, as is fishing, golfing, rock climbing, kayaking, skiing, ice-skating, snowboarding and sledding. You can attend fitness classes via Zoom in a garden or a park, or you can find a class that is held outside.

Depending on how they’re done, many popular outdoor activities also can be safe. While some of these may not be available in all seasons and locations, you can take advantage of them when the weather permits it. These activities include restaurant patio dining, camping, going to the beach and barbecuing. On a brighter note, COVID-19 at least launched the comeback of drive-in movie theaters and picnics.

When it comes to games for kids, the opportunities are even more versatile. You can do fun stuff on the trampoline such as chalk drawing or playing some hoops. You can make your kids go on a scavenger hunt and help them explore a new world. Needless to say, simple activities such as gazing at the stars or dancing to music can sometimes provide you with all the fun you need.

Takeaway – Social distancing measures were introduced to protect us and our loved ones from COVID-19 but well-being also includes doing things that make life worth living. As long as you take the necessary precautions, you can make thoughtful choices and bring a sense of normalcy and joy to your life even during the pandemic by going outside and giving your body, mind and soul what they need to stay healthy.