5 Healthy Tips to FEEL GOOD Camping
Find Balance and Feel Good
with our Top 5 Healthy Camping Tips
Camping is a time to unplug and relax - a time to connect with mother nature and the people you are with. And for many of us, it’s an opportunity to let ourselves off the hook - with our exercise regimes and healthy eating habits. I for one, am totally on board with letting myself off the hook! BUT- if I let the pendulum swing too far towards junk food + chilaxin’, my mental health takes a hit, and it’s just not worth it.
There’s a place between nutrient junkie and crappy camp food that allows for for balance. A few GOOD food options, and a commitment to move my body, just enough . . . to come home feeling good about EVERYTHING - fully re-charged, happy and healthy.
With a 5 day camping trip to Hornby Island on the horizon for the coming week, I have put together my top tips for FEELING GOOD.
MAKE IT COUNT BEFORE YOU GO
The Prequel to the Top 5 Tips
In the days before you head away, get sweaty! Get in a couple work-outs in the week before you go and if you can, even get one in the morning you leave!! This week I have my in-laws in town from the United States, on top of working and getting ready to go camping. It would be easy to tell myself “I’m too busy to workout,” but I have 5 days to spend quality time with all of them coming up, so I am cool sacrificing some of that time now to exercise. (Or, in my case, get up at the butt crack of dawn to exercise before work!)
For a quick and easy way to FEEL GOOD about your body + your health before you leave, order a JUICE CLEANSE to complete before your adventure. Reduce bloating, maybe shed a few pounds, and shift your cravings towards veggies. Head off knowing that no matter what happens while you are away, you started out ahead, and can land on your feet at the end of it - feeling balanced. Or consider hopping on a Juice Cleanse when you return from camping to get back to FEELING GOOD. Fast.
MOVE YOUR BODY!
Plan for at least one good solo sweat session (more if you can!) I would suggest the morning. Get up early and sneak away for a walk, run, hike, swim, bike, playground HIIT session . . whatever gets you sweating. Pack your sneakers and headphones and get, it, done! You’ll be back for coffee and breakfast feeling fabulous, before anyone’s even noticed.
Even doing this once will do a ton for your mental health. You will feel more confidant and proud of the effort you put it and less likely to have a “eff it, I’m camping, and I’ll eat all of the things . . .” type of mentality. Of course, it doesn’t have to be solo - if there is someone in your camping party that is up to get sweaty with you then bring it on! (My bestie Kim texted me last night she’s stashing an exercise band and one set of free weights in her trailer for us to use . . .oh snap! This shit just got real!)
We are also fans of sneaking in some squats and lunges during the day.. Last year we committed to doing 100 lunges or squats each afternoon. Boom. Dat ass looking gooood on the beach!
And of course . . .Exercise as a group! My kids always complain at the notion of a hike, but once we get going, they have a great time. Head on a hike, walk, bike, or family paddle board adventure to get the whole family moving.
When I think back to camping as a kid, playing with my parents is one of my fondest memories.
This is different than the focused period of solo or group exercise. Play can come in short bouts of energy and the goal is just to have fun. Badminton, spike ball, catch . . .Coming up with races and challenges you can play on the beach - An opportunity to get moving and have a blast!
The easiest, most straight-forward and effective way to feel good during the summer is drinking water. You all know the benefits, you just have to remember to do it. I try and drink 1L before I leave my campsite for the day’s adventure. Then pack another 1L for the day. (Be sure and have other people in your party do the same, so that your 1L doesn’t become the communal 1L.) Flavour your water with electrolytes for added hydration!
3. PARTY WITH A PURPOSE
In this case, the purpose being to have fun and enjoy, but not let it de-rail your mental and physical health. A common theme of camping is enjoying some adult bevys and I’m totally into it. But day drinking at the beach, followed by a few by the fire at night will add up to feeling more trashed than rejuvenated at the end of the trip. So plan for it. Be ready to opt for a sparkling water or cold pressed juice sometimes instead, and make it an even bigger reason to stay hydrated.
I like to dilute my rose or cider with sparkling water . .. Still feels fancy and fun, but I’m not consuming as much sugar or alcohol as I would otherwise. Often I will bring some Lady Luxe to mix with a little vodka and sparking water for another FEEL GOOD drinky drink :)
4. PACK HEALTHY FOOD
We all have our vices when it comes to camping. Mine are chips. Chips and more chips!! I firmly believe chips just taste better when eaten in the sun, preferably at a beach. I don’t think I have met a chip I didn’t like. (Random side note - when I lived in Beijing, there were a lot of shrimp flavours, roasted duck, spicy pork flavour. . . whatever! I ate them! I even had my mom ship dill pickle chips in my care packages that me - and my Canadian friends would try and bribe me for them.) In the winter I don’t even crave or eat much chips . . . but in the summer - bring em on!
Camping is not a time for elaborate plant based cuisine, but a little planning goes a long way to feeling good., so please enjoy - here’s my
Top Food Items to Pack
to balance out the bevy’s, chips + s’mores :)
Veggie Burgers - (kids have them on a bun, I usually opt for a lettuce wrap)
Protein Pancakes - (Costco sells a great brand. Make them for the kids for breakfast, eat them cold with peanut butter for a beach snack to fill you up).
Stuffed Peppers - Make the stuffing at home, bring the peppers and cook them over the fire (or wrap in tinfoil and cook on the stove if a fire ban is in place). Bring a double batch and the stuffing can be put in a wrap or topping for a salad another day.
Bagged Salad Kits - They are damn handy for camping as everything is conveniently ready to go.
Spring Mix - So you can throw a handful on your plate no matter what you’re eating.
Veggies + Hummus - It’s a classic, and it transports well in a cooler for beach snacks.
Zucchini and a hand held spiralizer - Zucchini’s pack amazingly well and don’t have to be refrigerated. Spriarlize them into noodles, then fry them in garlic and butter for a tasty side dish, or top with jarred spaghetti sauce for a slurpy satisfying meal. (My husband, Gabe went on a guys kayak trip, and his zucchini and spiralizer contribution was legendary - by day 4 it was the only fresh vegetable option and a welcome addition to the catch of the day).
Homemade Salad Dressing - I am making a big batch of my turmeric tahini dressing we use in our Rainbow Nourish Bowl - it tastes amaze on pretty much anything!
Let us help you FEEL GOOD! We have so many pre-made healthy options and would LOVE to make your life a little easier. Salads, Juice, Raw Granola + Healthy Snacks - all made with organic, clean, wholesome ingredients. Available for pre-order or pickup at our Nanaimo + Parksville locations. Plus! Retailers who stock our juice in Duncan, Victoria, Parksville + Qualicum to get you a juicy fix when you’re craving your veggie juice to bring a little balance back to your life.
Most certainly one the best parts about camping is the vacation from screen time for both for me and my kids. And it’s so easy to do, and comes so naturally . . . it doesn’t feel like a forced break, but a natural one. My brain is craving this part of camping as much as my mouth is craving for chips on the beach.
As an entrepreneur I rely on social media scheduling tools like Later that allow @mercederaindesign and I to plan ahead and schedule posts, an auto-reply on my email letting peeps know I am on vaccaaay, and most importantly of all - THE MOST AMAZING TEAM who run the GLJ ship so well I can peace out without a worry in the world.
Founder, Andrea Dershin