Benefits of Hiking for the Soul + Why We’re Choosing to #OptOutside on Black Friday

hiking for the soul san diego

Why We’re Choosing to #OptOutside on Black Friday 2016

opt Outside REI San Diego Will You Go Out With Us

This coming Friday, November 25th, is Black Friday. And what is Black Friday? It’s the biggest, most gargantuan, consumer “holiday” of the year. A little ironic that after Thanksgiving, a day of begin grateful for what really matters, is a day that promotes MASS material consumption for things we may or may not need.

This is why Om in Bloom is choosing to #OptOutside on Black Friday. REI has released a beautiful movement called, #OptOutside to promote getting in touch with nature and all the outdoors has to offer, INSTEAD of shopping on Black Friday. They’ve decided to close on this day, and I absolutely LOVE that. Read more about the #OptOutside movement HERE.

So what am I doing this lovely Black Friday? I’m gonna be burning my Thanksgiving calories by spending time leisurely hiking Los Penasquitos Canyon Trail, just outside San Diego County with one of my pups, Buddha (the other pup can’t make it cause of his breathing problems) and some friends! Now, to get to the meat of this post: benefits of hiking for the SOUL. Yes. There are benefits for the soul. Even if you have to drag yourself out of bed to do a hike, I promise you – the end result is always worth it.

benefits of hiking outdoor activity exercise

Benefits of Hiking for the Soul

So what can hiking really do for you? First and foremost – who doesn’t want to burn calories? Hiking offers a great workout – and depending on the terrain, can sculpt some great buns! Let me break it down for you. Grab a snack, read up, and then go do something active!

Physical Benefits

So we all know that hiking can offer some great physical benefits (remember, awesome buns!) so here’s a little reminder:

  • Increases Muscle Tone: All that walking, climbing, crawling, or whatever you may be doing on your hike will help tone your muscles. Muscle memory is great memory. And toned muscles are even better cause they look great!
  • Improves Cardo-Respiratory Fitness: All that physical activity is great for the heart, the respiratory system, and blood flow. Circulation is key to happy organs!
  • Weight Management: Hiking is a great way to burn calories. From leisurely walking, to running, to climbing, different hikes can offer a range of physical activity. Your workout is what you make of it. Challenge yourself!
  • Promotes Better Sleep: Nothing promotes better sleep than a good dose of physical activity throughout the day. By the time you’re finished hiking, eating, relaxing, and whatever else you may do throughout the day, you’ll be ready for bed in no time!

hiking for the soul san diego

Soul Benefits (the best kind!)

I don’t know about you guys, but I love just being outside just to just. be. outside. Something about connecting with nature on a personal level really speaks to me. Living in a city like San Diego is great, but it’s nice to get away from the fast life and enjoy a beach hike, a desert hike, anything outside! Check out these great hiking benefits for a happy soul:

  • Mental Clarity: More often than not, at least part of your hike will be spent without talking. You’ll be busy concentrating on where you’re stepping, not getting lost, or on the scenery around you. This can open up a realm of inner thought. Being in a natural environment can help bring new perspective, clarity, and a fresh look on anything that may be affecting you in life – good or bad.
  • Peace of Mind: In nature, there are natural distractions that help the mind escape the clutter that is the responsibilities and problems of every day life. In nature, you’re removed from these problems and this separation can help you achieve contentment, satisfaction, even so if it just lasts through the length of the hike.
  • Socializing: Hiking with others can be a great bonding experience! While you interact with the world around you, you also experience this adventure with your loved ones, with people also enjoying the hike, maybe even your dog! For this moment in time, you all share something in common: the hike. Enjoy it, support each other, and have fun!
  • Self-Challenge & Accomplishment: Some of us may be at a plateau in life, or maybe aren’t feeling stimulated as much as we could be. Hikes are great ways to challenge yourself and the capabilities of your body. So long as you try for a little bit, or see the hike all the way through, you’ll get to feel the satisfaction of effort. Feel the greatness of your accomplishments, no matter how big or small. You did it!

That’s my two cents. So get #OptOutside this Black Friday and whether you can or cannot do that – try to do so any other time!

Happy hiking!

xoxo, Om in Bloom

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