Most of our readers have at least one outdoor hobby, if not a whole collection of things you love to do outside. Camping, hiking, hunting, rock climbing, even extreme bird watching are amazing ways to spend your time anywhere but inside the house. Except, of course, that inside the house is where we all need to be right now.
Coronavirus has made our regular camping trips more than a little risky. Being alone in the great outdoors is safe enough, but planning for travel and crowded campsites are not. We know you’re jonesing for the woods, the rocks and the big non-light-polluted sky above you. We know you won’t sleep right until you’re surrounded by the sound of crickets and the soft scuffle of nocturnal creatures. So we’re here to help you out.
Here’s how to keep an outdoorsy mindset and soothe your inner sasquatch even though you’re staying safe at home for another few weeks.
Keeping an Outdoorsy Mindset…
When Working from Home
Working from home used to be considered a luxury; now it’s a necessity. If you’re stuck at a desk, we have more than a few fun ideas to bring the outdoors to you.
Set up your desk in front of a window where you can see the sky and waving tree branches just outside. If the weather is nice and you have a little patio, set up a table and your laptop where you can enjoy nature just outside your door. Or, if you can’t take yourself to nature, bring nature to you with a desk garden or leafy potted plants to keep your thumb green.
Another fun way to bring the great outdoors into your home office is a screen tapestry, a wall hanging that shows a picture-perfect representation of a beautiful outdoor scene. Choose a helicopter shot to feel like you’re high above a mountain or a life-sized image of a walkable forest path to feel like you could step right into the woods from your very chair.
When Exercising at Home
One of the biggest challenges of staying inside is staying active in close quarters. Instead of miles of forest, mountain, or breathtaking desert to walk and hike, you have your backyard and surrounding people-free areas. You can absolutely keep your hiking physique at home if you’re willing to do a little more with fewer miles. Isometric exercises, bodyweight exercises, and a few small weights and rubber bands can turn any room in your home into a mini-gym.
Even better? Take your workout outside. Lay out a beach towel, an exercise mat, or an indoor-outdoor rug as your workspace (unless your grass is especially soft). Enjoy the soft dapple of leaves overhead and the warm summer breeze during your outdoor workouts. The best part? You can rock your favorite pair of Freeflex™ Short. Your backyard has no brambles to hike through, and shorts are great for working up a sweat and really getting into your home workout.
Get active. With a yard, you can play ball, run laps, or choreograp outdoor dance routines. In fact, you can even go for long runs during quarantine, as long as you’re careful not to approach anyone you might see along the way. Running (or walking) is safe because it’s easy to keep a distance.
We’re currently loving this time for building our hiking muscles through routines instead of actual hiking. Do lunges, calf-lifts, and squats for leg strength. Set up obstacle courses for you (and the kids and pets and roommates) to increase your agility on irregular terrain. Practice with weights and chin-ups to improve your upper body climbing strength. Rock out now, and you’ll rock the great outdoors later.
By Joining Online Communities
The lockdown has created a unique environment of communal isolation. With so many people self-isolating at home, we still want to connect and engage in our favorite activities. The best way to do that right now is to meet online. Join forums and message boards. Jump into text and video chat rooms where people with similar interests gather. You can find other outdoor enthusiasts and talk about the things you love most, fueling your love of nature even when you can’t go out to your favorite parks, campsites, and wildernesses.
Now is a great time to work on your secondary camping skills like rope-tying, rucksack speed-packing. Try new dehydrated meal-pack recipes for the next time you go camping. Share these skills with your online outdoor-enthusiast friends and learn from the tips and tricks they know. Compare your coolest women’s hiking pants, and get recommendations for gear. Share your best stories, and get ideas for future adventures. Show off your trophies, and admire the trophies of others. You’ll have a blast, and you’ll be inspired when the parks open back up again.
By Planning Your Next Big Trip
One of the best ways to occupy your time is to plan your next trip. Consider the very first place you want to go when we can all go camping again. Think about that rock you want to climb or the trail you want to bike. Plan the perfect campsite location, and begin making preparations for the perfect departure. Order and practice packing your supplies. Think about the skills you’ll need, and hone them while you’ve got plenty of time ahead. Think about who you’ll take and the supplies you’ll need for a several-day trip.
Plan the route you’ll take, vehicle or plane, and the footpaths or bike paths you’ll travel in your explorations. Plan the activities you’ll do and where you’ll camp each night. This kind of in-depth visualization can soothe your cravings for the outdoors by ensuring you’ll be ready as soon as it’s possible to go.
Enjoy the Virtual Great Outdoors
The final and totally awesome thing you can do is simulate an outdoors bigger than your backyard can offer. If you can’t sleep peacefully without the soft sounds of wilderness around you, source a few ambient forest or desert evening soundtracks with the natural sounds of insects and wind and the rustling of leaves overhead. Use your television or even a personal projector to turn one wall into your digital portal to somewhere greener and more beautiful.
You can set your device backgrounds to beautiful parks you want to visit or ruins you want to hike. You can line up a sequence of documentaries about amazing places you’d like to visit. Bring the great outdoors to you when you can’t go to it. Drink in the sights and sounds of towering trees and breathtaking mountains, and it will be almost as if you were there for a few hours at a time.
Here at KÜHL, we love the outdoors as much as you do. That’s why we’re so enthusiastic about helping you get ready for that next big camping trip. Join us online to share your ideas, plans, and favorite gear with the rest of the KÜHL community. We look forward to hearing from you!
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