Technology is a wondrous thing, and nothing is truer than in the realm of exercise technology. I was lucky enough recently to experience a way of exercise that knocked my socks off! It was set up as an ‘immersive experience’ that allows you to select between walking, running, bike riding and even climbing modes. There was a 360 degree visual display with a virtually limitless number of track settings and environments you can choose from, allowing you to choose day or night and even different weather modes. The visual definition was outstanding, with seamless movement and high definition of the surroundings as you looked around. This wasn’t the best bit though. Depending on the environment you choose to exercise in, you get a more realistic experience through your other senses. For example, you can hear birds around you if you choose a natural setting. You could actually feel the sensation of heat from the sun and a breeze on your face! The incline and terrain level changes automatically depending if you are seeing a hill or other change in the track, constantly adapting the load you feel for maximum variety. It sure beat plodding along staring at a TV on the treadmill! I can safely say I haven’t ever tried any type of exercise machine before that comes even close to this experience!
The great news is that this interactive exercise technology is available to everyone, and it costs very little money! This experience is called outdoor exercise. It’s easy to forget how beautiful nature is and how much it can enhance exercising to make it a unique experience everytime. Although gym marketing campaigns would like to tell you otherwise, I consider outdoor exercise to be superior to many gym based machines by a long shot. Consider walking or jogging a bush track. The variations in surfaces you traverse provides a training stimulus that can’t be replicated in a gym and it’s more relevant to keeping us fit and healthy to handle everyday life.
We live in such a unique area of the world with a great variety of different terrains and places to exercise that never gets boring! And these are available to you without a weekly direct debit coming from your bank account! Choose your local park, beach or rainforest track. Go for a drive to a local mountain and challenge your self with one of the scrambling climbs – the only limit is your imagination.
The thing that holds some people back from a regular outdoor routine is the feedback they get from machines in the gym. This can be overcome by understanding certain cues that come from your own body and are well enhanced with a wearable device such or fitness tracker. With a little assistance, outdoor exercise can become all you need to stay healthy. If you need help in this regard please give me a call or book a session with me.
Mick Craven is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist with 20 years experience helping people of all ages and circumstances to lead a healthier and happier life. Contact us today to learn more or book a session.