Whether you live in Buckhead or Duluth, you’re likely to spend 80 to 90 percent of your life indoors. The real question is — so what? Is this a bad thing?

Inside is where we find running water, the relief of air conditioning in the summer and even the electricity to use workout DVDs (and possibly VHS tapes) that could be getting a little dusty. Being inside doesn’t seem too bad!

But if you can get outside, why not go?

There are two simple reasons why you should go outside: indoor air pollutants and improved mental well-being. Indoor air is generally much more polluted than the outdoor environment. This can negatively impact your health with issues ranging from asthma to lung cancer.

A few of the culprits are mold, dust mites, lead, radon and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) found in paint, cleaning products and furniture. It’s imperative that we not only keep our homes healthy and clean, but also focus on getting outside to breathe Georgia’s fresh air.

The mood boosting powers of the outdoors is another reason to get out and enjoy nature. A study conducted by the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry found that individuals who exercise outdoors have increased energy and enjoyment.

They also have less anger and tension compared to those who exercise indoors. Also, those who practiced physical activity outside were more likely to plan on exercising again. And don’t forget about the Vitamin D that you’ll absorb from the sunshine…you can’t get that indoors!

While it’s hot and humid in the South, water sports and activities can keep us from overheating. You can swim, kayak, canoe, fish and burn even more calories with water aerobics under the sun and in the water.

Let’s review. When we exercise outside, we inhale fewer pollutants. We also have a higher chance of being in a better mood and exercising again.

Sounds like a win-win! Whether it’s a 20-minute early morning swim in the outdoor pool or a day of canoeing with your family, you’ll not regret getting outside and moving more to live more.

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