When it comes to cardio exercise, running has been in the past, and remains still, the classic and most popular example, and not without reason! Running does a huge amount to keep you healthy and happy in mind and body, but any avid runner knows that running on concrete can be hellish for the joints. Running on the beach, however, takes this activity to a whole new level; the sand, the sea, and the breeze all enhance the experience, but there are a few practical reasons as to why you should run on the beach more often…
Here they are:
Improve Your Overall Health
Your entire body benefits from the positive response that comes along with exercise, but some forms of exercise are undoubtedly more beneficial than others. Running on the beach, for example, will improve your breathing as you deliver more oxygen to your lungs. If you do this regularly you will greatly increase your stamina and enable yourself to perform more regularly at a higher level. The natural resistance provided by the sand when running on the beach will work more muscles and work them harder as you fight the resistance of the sand, and your body works to keep balanced on this unstable surface. Ironically, however, this terrain, while it works you harder, is much gentler on your joints as the impact of each footfall is lessened.
More Resistance = More Calories Burned
A side-effect of this higher resistance offered when you run on sand, other than more defined and sculpted leg muscles, is the higher rate of calorie burn that it incurs. When you engage in cardio your metabolism is boosted during (and for some time after) the activity, and if you up the resistance, thereby making your body work harder, the calorie burn per hour also raises. If you combine this with intervals of maximum effort and rest you’ll see a higher baseline calorie burn for hours after you stop, even when you’re at your desk or watching TV.
The benefits of exercise, fresh air, sunshine, and the rhythms of the sea when it comes to stress reduction have all been extolled separately… so it makes sense that combining the lot will have a great impact when it comes to reducing stress and lifting your mood. Anyone who loves to workout knows the feeling of calm, almost zen-like transcendence of reality that comes with a good session of running on the beach; the sound of the waves and the salty sea-breeze only adds to this.