Be sure to check out this new study by the American Chemical Society which details the benefits of “green exercise.”
Essentially, just five minutes of exercise out in a natural setting (versus a gym) significantly improves one’s mental health.
What I found particularly noteworthy was that the presence of water seemed to play a significant role in elevating one’s mood:
All green environments improved both self-esteem and mood; the presence of water generated greater improvements. Although participants should be encouraged to undertake outdoor activities in both rural and urban environments, spending time near waterside (e.g., beach or river) or participating in water-based activities may give a greater benefit.
Of course, you all know my views on recommended water-based activities!