The Many Health Benefits of Camping
Despite the advances in technology, people long for the great outdoors. Nothing is quite as relaxing as spending time in nature and away from the demands of the real world. While camping is a fun activity anyone can enjoy, it also comes with a great deal of health benefits, too. Before you start out on your adventure, it is important that you choose the right type of camping for you.
Physical Benefits of Camping
Moving around outdoors is a workout in itself. It is a stark change to many sedentary activities families often normally enjoy together. Instead of watching TV or playing video games, you and your children will actually walk around and test new limits while exploring nature. Even setting up a campfire is a workout, from cutting down wood to getting everything set up just right.
The type of terrain you choose can also benefit your fitness. More hills mean walking on inclines to burn more calories. If you camp near a lake, you can enjoy many other physical activities like swimming and fishing.
Camping, especialy if it includes hiking or backpacking, can test your body, and you may work muscles that you have forgotten about. The stretching and walking is also great for your back. This is particularly the case if you are accustomed to sitting at a computer desk most days.
Psychological Benefits of Camping
Not only does camping benefit your physical health, but it also provides a host of psychological benefits too. We live in a stressful world, and the constant stimulations from technology don’t generally help us relax. Humans are meant to be in nature, and this is perhaps why people find the outdoors so comforting. You will instantly feel better after starting your camping trip. Some preexisting health conditions can also benefit from camping, such as anxiety and depression.
Meditation and yoga are two activities that are typically performed in gyms. Why not take the exercises a step further and perform them outside on your camping trip? Feel the energy within the wilderness and concentrate on your place in nature. You will feel relaxed, de-stressed and much more energized than before.
Transportation to Better Health
While camping is a great way to relax and spend time on your health, you will first need to know how to get to your destination. With all the equipment you’ll need, a compact car is simply out of the question for anything except the most ultra-light backpacker. For those of us with families in tow, regular vehicles don’t come with the necessary space and amenities that camper vans do.
Dave Arbogast camper vans are popular examples of conversion vans used widely for camping. More nimble and economical than full sizeed RV’s, these vans give you the space that your family needs, but you also have the option of adding features to make your journey more comfortable. Some of these options include:
- Extra reclining chairs
Even if your plan is backpacking or trail biking, you’ll still need to get there, so a camper van is still your best choice.
Healthy Eating While Camping
Admittedly, our diets tend to suffer when we go camping. One of the paradoxes of camping is that we are surrounded by nature, but we skip fruit and fresh veggies, relying on shelf-stable and canned foods. If we don’t have the convenience of a refrigerator, we might stock up a cooler with picnic food, high in fat. We’ll burn it off with the increased physical activity, but it’s barely healthy.
To maximize the healty benefits of camping, we have to recognize that tendency to default to hot dogs and canned beans and plan instead to bring in healthier alternatives. Consider dried fruit as opposed to trail mix, fire roasted corn instead of canned beans, and if you have a cooler, chicken breasts instead of hamburgers. Better yet, get a good edible plants manual and forage for fresh greens to make you camping trip extra fresh and healthy.
However you go, make your camping vacation a memorable and healthy one!