Blog, Outdoor Skills


As part time Outdoor Guide and someone who has backpacked for a long time, I often hear a ton of excuses as to why people just can’t find the time to spend a weekend outdoors.  With the “healthy living” movement, you would think that people would be rushing outdoors to get their “hike on”. But actually, people are spending more time indoors than outdoors.

In a article published in the LA Times James Cambell wrote:

Are we as Americans actually losing our connection to the outdoors? Conservation ecologist Patricia Zaradic of the Environmental Leadership Program and conservation biologist Oliver Pergams of the University of Illinois at Chicago have documented a disturbing trend of declining per-capita visits to national parks and forests, drops in park attendance, and other sliding indicators of nature recreation since the late 1980s. They see at work a fundamental cultural shift away from nature.

But the Healthy Lifestyle is growing…

According to “People will spend hundreds of hard earned money each year to get healthy. In fact, one out of every five Americans are heading to the gym, or at least paying for a membership. Which puts the fitness industry in a pretty sweet spot: a largely unhealthy and overweight population is looking for ways to get in shape. Whether it’s pumping iron like our forefathers or the newest trampoline workout – there is an immense appetite for exercise. Over 54 million Americans paid gym membership fees in 2014, and for the second year in a row actual visits to the gyms exceeded 5 billion! The average member visited their club over 100 times, an all-time high. Memberships have grown 18.6% between 2008 and 2014, and the trend continued in 2015”

Going to the Gym is GREAT, and definitely a hand clap is appropriate here. (hands clapping). But where does your Vitamin D come from unless they have put treadmill outside? What about your psychological health? Your mental health? Isn’t that part of “the healthy lifestyle?” It doesn’t do anyone any good if we are in great psychical shape if our stress level at work is through the roof.

In an article written by PAUL G. MATTIUZZI, PH.D. he explains the need to “CLEAN YOUR BRAIN”. He writes:

“Psychological health is important with respect to how we function and adapt, and with respect to whether our lives are satisfying and productive. In the end, psychological health and well-being basically has to do with the question: “how are you doing?” 

If your answer is “Not Good”, then maybe a dose of extreme Nature is what you need.  This is why WE think that maybe you should take your workout on the Trail. (with a backpack on of course)

If you are spending time indoors and not out on the trail. New research say’s that is NOT OK.

In an Article published on Vitamin D fights disease. In addition to its primary benefits, research suggests that vitamin D may also play a role in:

  • reducing your risk of multiple sclerosis, according to a 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association
  • decreasing your chance of developing heart disease, according to 2008 findings published in Circulation
    helping to reduce your likelihood of developing the flu, according to 2010 research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

D fights depression

Research has shown that vitamin D might play an important role in regulating mood and warding off depression. In one study, scientists found that people with depression who received vitamin D supplements noticed an improvement in their symptoms.

Healthy Living is a balance between eating right, exercise and “cleaning your brain”.  The “trail” offers all those and much more. So next time you get that Gym Membership bill in the mail, or your feeling completely stressed out, or maybe even think you need to drop a few pounds. Remember, the trail is always near by, patiently waiting for you to partake. So tear up that bill, get your gear on, pack a pack, and get out there.

Liked it? Take a second to support nocmanus on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

In 2003 I completed a Thru-Hike on the Appalachian Trail. Since then I have over 12,000 miles underfoot and 20 years of backpacking, and camping experience. Certifications include WFA, WFR, LNT Trainer, and belong to AORE. Have been guiding backpacking trips for over 10 years. The outdoors has taught me one thing. Trusting the Trail! really does provide everything a person needs.

Comments are off this post!

Become a part of our Community