Fact: Outdoor exercise makes you happier

Science says exercising outside — with the right soundtrack — can boost your mood.

man and woman exercising outdoors

Photo, Stockrocket/iStockphoto.

Spring is the perfect time to escape the crowded gym (and sweaty fitness classes) for the great outdoors. The benefits of exercising in nature add up to more than extra space and fresh air: A 2014 study published in the journal Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being found that regular physical activity outdoors leads to greater long-term happiness compared to working out inside. There’s even evidence that it could help you sleep better. So grab your lightweight layers and head for the park. Your body, and mind, will thank you!

The ultimate playlist

There’s a reason you can’t hit the gym without your favourite tunes queued up: Research shows that a song’s style, lyrics and beat can improve your workout. Sports psychologists from London’s Brunel University, along with the music streaming site Spotify, discovered that the tempo sweet spot for high-intensity exercise is 120 to 140 beats per minute. They created a 20-track playlist designed to keep you motivated from start to finish. Here are our favourite five.

the best running songs


This article was originally published in Canadian Health & Lifestyle.

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