Five Things to Do for a Stress-Less Spring
Spring is in the air! The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming. It’s a great time to throw open the windows, do a little spring cleaning, dust off your bike and maybe even find the dog’s leash. There’s nothing like beautiful weather to make you want to get moving.
If life has you stressed, it’s even more important to focus on taking every opportunity to get active. Experts agree that exercise is THE best way to combat run-of-the-mill stress in our lives. So lace up those sneakers and take a look at the five best activities you can do in the Dallas area this spring for health and wellness.
- Go for a Hike – Did you know that spending time in nature has been linked to stress reduction? In fact, The American Public Health Association confirms that just being around nature is enough to markedly increase relaxation. It makes perfect sense. Hiking brings you face to face with nature’s beauty, giving you the freedom to think without the constant distraction of cell phones, loud talking, crowds, traffic, etc. The Dallas-Fort Worth area is brimming with great trails and venues for a day of hiking with friends.
- Ride a Bike – Don’t have access to hiking in your neck of the woods? No worries. Cycling shares many of the same stress reducing benefits as hiking. The repetitive action of pedaling involved in cycling can help your brain release outside stresses in the same way that meditation works. By focusing on your pedal stroke, you can block out other worries and stresses of the day, giving your brain a break from all of your daily problems. Check out the popular White Rock Lake Trail, a Dallas favorite for local cyclists, or the newer Katy Trail closer to downtown Dallas.
- Walk the Dog – According to a 2009 University of Missouri study, walking a dog for just 30 minutes a day can reduce your risk for heart disease, relieve stress and more — but only 40 percent of dog owners walk their dogs regularly. With such great health benefits, everyone should walk their dogs! Just don’t forget your pooper scooper 🙂 The Wagging Tail Dog Park in Dallas even has dog-friendly hiking trails!
- Plant a Garden – Gardening is a popular hobby that doubles as an outstanding stress reliever. Focusing on one thing – be it weeding or planting or harvesting – is good for the soul and calms the mind. Leave your phone in the house and dig in (literally) to the task at hand. “A garden is a place where we can slow down and reconnect with the natural world the way our ancestors did all day, every day,” says Kristen K. Brown, author of The Happy Hour Effect: 12 Secrets to Minimize Stress and Maximize Life. North Texas offers a great climate for gardening – especially heat and drought-resistant varieties of perennials.
- Hit the Pool – A Swedish study published in the International Journal of Stress Management found that even just floating in water triggers the body’s relaxation response, helping lower stress-hormone levels. In the study, nearly 80 percent of the subjects showed improvements such as feeling less tense and depressed. That’s reason enough to take a dip in Dallas – either in your own backyard pool or at the local rec center.
As great as each of these activities are, poor vision has a way of complicating things, making what should be a relaxing experience, somewhat less relaxing. Worrying about glasses and/or contacts when you’re hiking or biking is a pain. And swimming can become more chore and less leisure when you can’t see well enough without your glasses and contacts to even enjoy yourself.
Kleiman Evangelista Eye Centers, with locations in Dallas, Plano and Arlington, wants to help you get the very most out of your leisure time. At KE, we can help you see better, so you have the freedom to enjoy your life, the way you want to live it. We have many different solutions to help you achieve better vision, including but totally not limited to, LASIK. Just ask us!
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