Taking the Rat Race to the Woods!

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Defying all rules of city life and taking the route less traveled is the dream of a real camper. It starts with the desire embraced in our hearts, that feeling of just letting go of all that is mundane and mechanized. Forget the laptop, the cellphone, the tablet, and listen carefully to the sounds that mother nature offers. Don’t let go of this moment when you notice the first bird’s chirp, the cicadas’ singing, or the rustling of the brush. All that fresh air, the stars and even the wildlife! If only nature knew all the goodness that it provides us.   

Whether you are undertaking an adventure all alone and hauling the household, pets included, the primary purpose of this endeavor is to appreciate and enjoy life in the great outdoors. So, leave your digital devices behind, and if you forget any camping accessories, improvise.  

The fresh air promotes a perfect night’s sleep, so be prepared to cozy in a comfy sleeping bag or a cot. There is just something beautiful about letting go of everyday life and finding that perfect camping spot.

Finding the perfect campsite

So, what is the ideal campsite where you picture yourself being part of nature, just another creature? Though there are plenty of regulated state parks that have camping areas, as well as cabin rentals, you will still need to pay attention to where you hang your hat. Here’s my list 

  1. A flat piece of ground to pitch your tent, make sure it’s not too hard.
  2. Select an area where others have camped before you but not to close to other campers.
  3. Make sure there’s water source not too far off your site. 
  4. Take a paper map where you have marked various exciting points and hiking trails.
  5. Pitch your tent where you might get some share and, if windy, pitch your tent so that its skinny portion faces the wind.

Once you have settled, you enjoy the moment, that feeling of accomplishment. But, don’t get oo comfy yet, get organized so you can enjoy this adventure.  

Here’s my next list of items to haul into your tent and your immediate vicinity.

Depending on how far you are from a town, you will need additional supplies. But, always keep cash hidden in a safe place.  

Camping with Kids

Don’t forget to bring their favorite book or toy, something that helps them go to sleep and some outdoor toys to keep them occupied, maybe a pail and small shovel. You can send them on scavenger hunts right around the campsite. Bring a bunch of little prizes and keep them hidden, so they know there is a reward at the end!

Other games to take:

Keep in mind that the whole point of the trip is to unplug, have fun, and experience nature. The health benefits just keep coming because getting away from it all will leave you feeling relaxed and stress-free. Enjoy spending time with the family or alone, whatever the case may be. Consider purchasing a Search and Rescue Assistance card and leave information about your whereabouts with close relatives or friends.

Relax and enjoy your adventure; you will be amazed by how aware you’ll be of your surroundings. Don’t forget that your biggest fears are not predators, but your brain.  

Getting Back to a Healthier and Slimmer You

Author: Myrene Dickinson

February 27, 2020

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Yo-Yo Dieting, as you all know, leads to weight loss and regaining it as soon as you return to regular eating. It’s a dead end without an outlet, if you let it. To achieve real, lasting weight loss, it’s important to make lifestyle changes for good that incorporate exercise and diet.

Avoid yo-yo dieting at all costs because it can be harmful to health, leading to increased body fat, fatty liver, and depression.[1]   Put a stop to negative impulses by recognizing the triggers and exchanging them with positive behaviors. 

Dietary Changes

So, in this process, you’ve lost weight and then gained it back either through a lack of continued exercise or perhaps some adverse nutritional changes. To go back and shed the weight off again, you will need to commit to the original process that melted away the fat in the first place. Start with slowly making dietary changes. Cutting portion size and sugar are two of the leading ways to do this. [2]


Next, move on to exercise. Perhaps a recumbent bike will help get you going. It’s easier on the back, and you can set a stationary model up in the home and watch TV while exercising. Standard exercise bikes take up less room and will accomplish the same task but will put a little more pressure on the back.[3] Utilizing an upright stationary bike with arm pull bands will also add a good workout for the arms. These are great alternatives to the great outdoors when you are battling mosquitos in summer or cold, rainy weather during other times of the year. There is also the advantage of being able to catch up on your favorite shows while you work hard to take the weight off. Plus, it makes the time fly.

One other item worthy of adding to your workout regimen helps the legs and firms the butt muscles. It is a gadget placed between the legs, and you use your thigh muscles to close the device and allow it to open again slowly. Do this while performing kegel exercises, and you’ve killed two birds with one stone! I know its odd sounding, but honestly, once you’ve tried it, you’ll be hooked!

Stretch bands that allow you to stand on the center while utilizing the handles to perform various workouts are another exercise you can do in the house that will help with weight loss.[4] Standard exercise bikes are excellent in most cases, but again if you have back difficulties, try a recumbent bike, increasing the time slowly until you gain more confidence and can sustain a half-hour ride. Do the half-hour ride for several weeks and then gradually increase the time again, a little at a time. You can also change the terrain settings on your bike if it has this option and start riding uphill.  Doing this will increase the intensity a bit and make your work out a little more difficult over time.

Passive Exercise

Remember this when you are trying to lose weight, moving is better than not moving. Try to increase your movement in any way possible. If you go to the store shopping, park further away from the store. On days when you don’t feel like using the recumbent bank, spend a little extra time walking through the stores. Get a pedometer to track your steps and see how far you usually walk during the day. Note this as your baseline. Work to increase the number of steps and distance over time. Passive exercises, such as walking through a store or parking further away, are just the tip of the iceberg. Movement, portion control, and subtle changes to the diet are critical factors in sustained weight loss.[5] For a discussion on diet as relates to weight loss, look at Weight Loss Maintenance: A Review of Dietary Related Strategies that offers some tips and tricks to help you along the way.

As you know, it’s a combination of diet, exercise, and setting goals. I invite you to take a look at the products I suggest – my promotion is based on my own experience and that of reviews. Click here


  1. “Deep body composition phenotyping during weight cycling: relevance to metabolic efficiency and metabolic risk.” Accessed February 26, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1111/obr.12254.
  2. Smith, M., Segal, J., & Robinson, L. (2020). How to Lose Weight and Keep It Off. Retrieved 26 February 2020, from https://www.helpguide.org/articles/diets/how-to-lose-weight-and-keep-it-off.htm
  3. Cronkleton, E. (2020). Stationary Bike Workout Benefits and Exercise Plans. Retrieved 27 February 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/stationary-bike-workout
  4. 20 Resistance Band Exercises To Strengthen Your Entire Body by Amy Winderl – https://www.self.com/gallery/resistance-band-exercises
  5. How Much Should I Walk To Lose Weight? by Wendy Bumgardner – https://www.verywellfit.com/how-long-should-you-walk-to-lose-weight-3432706