Feeling a little sluggish lately? Want to get outside and enjoy nature but you aren’t sure what to do once you are there? How about wanting to shed some inches from your waistline but you aren’t the type to go to the gym and sweat through a monotonous routine? Then you definitely want to consider gardening as your go-to physical activity.
A Closer Look
Whether you decide to plant garden beds full of color, bursting with flowers and greenery that spill over into pots located on your patio and walkway or you ultimately decide to go with rows of fresh produce – vegetables, fruits and herbs – you will be happy that you chose gardening as your daily physical activity.
And that’s the thing; when it comes to gardening, you can literally garden every single day. You first have the physical act of creating your garden, which includes tilling the soil, planting the seeds, watering the beds and/or pots of your chosen specimens (check out the right sprinkler head to give your garden and lawn an even spray of water whenever you chose), and then performing maintenance tasks that will encourage your garden to grow healthy and strong.
Physical health, along with mental health, is the basis for a healthy and happy life. You need physical activity to increase the production of good hormones in the body, it increases a body’s immune system and it also decreases blood pressure which in turn prevents heart disease. Having a daily amount of physical activity into your routine also helps decrease the amount of fat clogging your arteries which when not checked, can lead to blockages, heart disease, hypertension and more.
So how exactly can gardening benefit your physical health? Is it really a substitute for a workout? The answers are below!
Creating the Garden Bed
One of the most physically tasking parts of gardening is creating the garden beds. You have to use all of your muscles and core strength to move the soil into place either with a wheelbarrow or by hand and with the use of shovel. You will need to use your leg muscles and crunch your stomach while incorporating your arms into the tilling of the earth as you want to expose it to oxygen and break up any solid clumps.
Once the garden beds are ready, you need to squat down to remove any debris (weeds, rocks, etc.) and then using a trowel or your hands; you will need to place the seedlings or seeds in small holes. Then you need to fill in the holes to protect the additions to the earth.
After all that, it’s time to drag out the watering hose or redirect your sprinkler to soak through the soil of the garden beds and encourage growth. A layer of compost or fertilizer will also need to be spread across the beds to supply your plants with the nutrients they need to grow healthily.
Maintaining the Garden Bed
Gardening is not a hobby or act that is considered done after you plant seeds or seedlings in the ground. Rather it is a continuous thing that will require you to head outside at least one a day or every other day to ensure the survival of your garden and lead it to fruition.
Weeding and watering your garden beds are a daily requirement. Without water, your plants will struggle to find the right mixture between liquid nutrients and added nutrients (through fertilizer and compost mixtures) that they need to complete their internal processes and grow. Weeding is also a necessity when you have a garden as an influx of weeds can choke out the plants you are trying to grow. The weeds will soak up all the water you add to your garden beds, churn through the nutrients from the fertilizer and compost faster while blocking the plants from the natural sunlight they require.
Once you notice your compost mixture turning into a dusty mess on your garden beds, you will need to remove it from the beds and spread a fresh layer to protect your plants from the natural elements that could damage them – wind speeds, temperatures changes and pests to your garden.
There is an influx of people turning to the act of gardening to meet their physical requirement needs and these people are coming from all cultures, backgrounds and generations. Most of the older generation, such as the Baby Boomers, have been taught the art of gardening through their parents and grandparents but the newer generation are catching on to the trend. There are workshops, forums and even gardening clubs that you can join to catch a glimpse of what exactly goes into gardening.
It doesn’t matter if you decide to garden for fun, garden for leisure, or garden for fresh produce – you are getting the opportunity to head outside, soak up some natural Vitamin D (just don’t forget the sunscreen!) and you are getting the opportunity to move your body, up that heart rate and overall – physically benefit your body.