People are increasingly finding the desire to get back to basics, simplify and connect with nature. We are surrounded by so much stuff competing for our time – our cell phone, Facebook, Twitter, Email, people who need something from us, etc. Getting out in the woods and unplugging, even for a few hours, can get us away from that stuff and allow us to relax and spend time connecting with nature and ourselves.
Hiking is accessible for most people both physically and financially. If you can walk, you can hike. You can find trail terrain to fit almost any ability level and you can make it an easy stroll or hard, fast push to the top. Also, you don’t need high-tech gear to start (although we admit we are gear-heads and love high-tech gadgets).
Exercising with your dog is increasing in popularity as a trend too. Everywhere I look these days, articles are popping up on the subject. Dogs make great training partners because they love to get outside to get regular exercise and are ready to go pretty much anytime (Just remember that your dog needs physical conditioning just like you do).
Sounds like it is a match made in heaven to me – hiking and exercising with your dog. As you can tell, we are big advocates of that – both for fun and for fitness.
So what are the benefits of hiking with your dog? (click to enlarge the infographic)
7 Reasons to Hike with Your Dog
- A tired dog is less likely to act out or misbehave at home – Your dog will be tuckered out when you get home and more interested in sleeping than getting into the garbage or barking at every leaf that blows by your house.
- Adventuring with your dog in the woods is a great workout that doesn’t feel like work – Your focus will be on the beauty of nature and your dog’s enjoyment rather than how hard you are huffing and puffing.
- You and your dog can bond and learn to trust each other more – Take it from me, something magical happens when you and your dog are alone in the woods together. you learn more about your dog’s behavior and limits and they look to you for guidance.
- You get to experience the trail from a new perspective – Certain things on the trail catch your eye. Certain things on the trail will catch your dog’s eye (and nose). Those probably won’t be the same thing so you can experience the trail the way your dog sees it.
- It will help you both stay fit and maintain a healthier weight – Being out in nature and getting a good workout feels so good when you’re done that you’ll probably want to do it again… and again. Do it regularly enough and it’s now a fitness routine.
- It will reduce stress for both you and your dog – Blue is known to have a calming, sedative effect and the green is soothing and refreshing. Both colors are abundant in the outdoors. All of the fresh air you’ll both inhale doesn’t hurt either.
- It gives you both a healthy high – Like people, dogs experience increased levels of endorphins after exercise. Endorphins make you happy. They’re like nature’s opiates and are responsible for the human “runner’s high”.