The Great Outdoors


UNITED STATES—The summer months are upon us and the beautiful weather is just right around the corner.  It’s the perfect time to be outdoors, but an epidemic is crippling our nation.  People are not spending as much time outdoors as in previous decades.  Why is this?  For starters, during the summer months school is no longer in session for most kids and college students. For those that are attending classes, teachers tend to be more laid back and the work load is not as vigorous.  You still get the opportunity to enjoy some of the summer.

The weather is nearly perfect for most of us from June-August.  For most regions you can kiss the frigid temperatures farewell and no need to worry about snowfall so what gives?  The answer to that question is TECHNOLOGY!  You might be thinking, but why?  Well it’s because technology has a way of controlling our lives.  Even if we make a pact with ourselves to not use our cell phone for a day or watch TV for week, we sometimes cave in out of fear of missing something.  I understand the feeling. Even when I take a vacation I find myself wondering why I’m checking my email, I’m on vacation so hands off of it.

During the summer months, the TV world is on hiatus, which allows us the opportunity to not care so much about missing our favorite shows.  Yes, there are programs that air doing the summer months, but nothing compared to the likes of the content that arrives during the fall, winter and spring months.  Perhaps it’s the humid weather, the excessive heat or the many minions of the great outdoors that deter us.

In my opinion, there is nothing quite like the sun shining bright in the clouds, it’s a great way to lift your spirits if you’re having a not so good day.  In addition, the daylight hours are extended which is always a plus in my opinion, for some us during the fall and winter months the amount of daylight is cut down significantly.  For most of us the sun doesn’t begin to shine until a little after 8 a.m. and the darkness creeps around the corner a little after 5 p.m. For many, staying outdoors after the sun sets in some regions is not the best idea because of the crime element, which is understandable.

My argument is not to justify why we stay indoors during certain time frames of the year, it’s for us to become much more active outdoors during the summer months as the opportunities are endless.  There is the potential to spruce up your lawn, garden and the outskirts surrounding your home.  There is the opportunity to play catch or fun games with the kids.  Sports are a highlight for many families, not to add the fact that so much more activities can be done outdoors then indoors.

Walking the dog, visiting the farmer’s market, rock climbing, swimming, a day at the beach, just a few of the activities to be indulged in.  Look at it this way; the more time we spend outside of the home, the more likely we are to engage our bodies in movement.  A moving body tends to indicate a healthy body as you are remaining active, which means a longer, more fulfilling life. Whatever your favorite outdoor activities are this year, whether it’s rain or shine, get out there and enjoy doing what you love the most.  A few raindrops never hurt anyone, but if you’re in the sun be sure to use sun protection.

By Trevor Roberts