Spring is in the air and although we are still practicing social distancing, there are many outdoor opportunities for physical activity. In fact, during this season of Covid-19, it is even more important to be as active as possible, whether indoors or outdoors.
Physical activity benefits both the body and mind. On top of having the ability to reduce high blood pressure, manage weight, and reduce the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and more, physical activity can also alleviate mild depression and help give you positive feelings and less stress. This is a perfect time to get moving!
Idaho has a bounty of outdoor physical activity opportunities for all skill levels, making adding outdoor activity into your weekly plan extremely achievable. There are several apps that help find locations in your area to be active, such as All Trails. All Trails can be accessed both from the app on your phone or at www.alltrails.com. Through this tool you can filter your results by location, activity, difficulty level, and even additional filters such as dog friendly, kid friendly, stroller friendly, wheelchair friendly, and paved or unpaved trails.
Are you looking for a local stroll next to the river in Idaho Falls? All Trails recommends the Idaho Falls Greenbelt Loop. Or how about a moderately challenging hike in the Boise area that also allows dogs on the trail? One option provided by All Trails is the Crestline Sidewinder Loop Trail. Or maybe you are in northern Idaho and wanting to bird watch with your children? All Trails shows that Fernan Lake Natural Area is a perfect location.
Social distancing can still be maintained during outdoor physical activity by keeping the standard distance of six feet from those that are not in your immediate household. If the path, trail or park that you choose ends up being too crowded to maintain a healthy distance from others, consider picking a new one.
Water bottles, snacks, and hand sanitizer are also important items to bring to limit unnecessary stops.
Scheduling your physical activity time and setting goals are keys to success. Writing out a realistic, specific weekly physical activity schedule increases your motivation to achieve your goals. Start small and slowly build yourself up.
Finally, have FUN! If you aren’t enjoying yourself, you won’t continue. Choose an outdoor activity that you enjoy and take a breath of fresh air.