A common form of adventure and exercise in San Luis Obispo is hiking. Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy! Hiking in San Luis Obispo can make you happy through a leisurely stroll along a coastline in Montana de Oro, or a steep rock climb up Bishop’s peak, depending on your interest level and physical fitness. In the article on Huff Post “Proof That Hiking Makes You Happier and Healthier” by Abigail Wise, Wise states that spending time outdoors while hiking increases attention spans and creative problem solving skills by as much as 50 percent. It is a low impact exercise, which means compared to running sports, the activity is easier on the joints. Hiking also
-lowers blood pressure,
-reduces the danger of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.
The disconnection from technology and fresh air can contribute to a lower risk of depression. Kara Mayer Robinson of Web M.D. points out the physical benefits of uphill trekking which includes muscle strengthening, core strengthening, and balance control. A five to ten percent incline equals a 30-40 percent increase in calories burned. In “What are the Benefits and Disadvantages of Hiking” by Alexis Jenkins, Jenkins warns of the risks of the sport such as altitude sickness and other injuries depending on hazardous conditions. To have the most positive experience, you must
-Always be prepared with a first aid kit
-Designate a buddy to keep an eye on your safety
-Familiarize yourself with the trail conditions and wildlife in the area before embarking on a trip
-Most importantly, protect yourself from sunburn and dehydration by bringing plenty of water and applying sunscreen regularly
All of these tips can help you to be prepared for a hiking experience beneficial to your mental and physical health.