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  • How to make good this weekend

    According to the Outdoor Foundation, camping is one of America’s favorite pastimes with more than 40 million people heading out in 2014. If you're having trouble getting away from the hassle and hustle that modern living brings, here’s 5 reason make a break for it and go camping.

    1: Camping Can Help You Sleep

    woman sitting outside green tent holding tin mug

    If you are one of the more than 60 million Americans affected by sleep disorders, camping should be on your list of things to do. Why? According to Scientific American, one week of camping without your electronic devices resets your melatonin level to be in sync with the rising and setting of the sun.

    Melatonin is one of the primary hormones that governs your sleep. For eons, human sleep patterns were governed by the rising and setting of the sun. The natural rising and falling of melatonin levels are interrupted by artificial lighting and light from electronic devices.

    2: Camping Lets You See The Stars

    Night sky full of stars

    When was the last time you saw the stars? No we mean REALLY saw the stars away from the glare and gloomy orange skyglow of urban living? We’re talking about the kind of sky where there are so many stars on the rich black canvas above that it takes your breath away. If you’ve never seen a sky like this before, or it’s been a while, do yourself a favor and see it this weekend. Here’s a light pollution map that will help you find places for truly amazing stargazing.

    3: Camping Helps You Spend Time with Close Friends and Family

    group of people hiking down trail

    Humans are social creatures. For most of human history, we lived in small groups where we had to work together and rely on each other. This built strong, close-knit relationships that helped us get through tough times. Typical camping activities like setting up camp, cooking together, hiking, and sitting around the campfire chatting until late into the night builds and improves social ties. Research has shown that strong social ties and interaction literally improves your health.

    4: Camping Helps You Spend Time Away from People

    backpacker standing on rock looking at rocky mountainOn the other hand, there is something to be said about solitude. Sometimes a person needs to be free of emails, texts, phone calls, social media, bosses, co-workers, and everyone else. Camping in solitude can be a valuable way to re-center yourself before heading back into civilization. Just make sure you do it safely.

    5: Camping Lets You Breath Truly Fresh Air

    tent pitched on grass in front of rock boulders

    The air truly is better out camping in the wilderness. Indoor air pollution can be up to 100 times worse than outdoor air pollution. The air you breathe inside is full of dust, fumes, off-gassing from carpets, furniture and floors even if you don’t directly smell them. These pollutants are trapped inside the walls of the building with you. Not something you want to breathe.

    Camping away from the pollution of an urban environment lets you fill your lungs with fresh oxygen and breathe more deeply. Increased oxygen levels will help everything from your mood to your energy level.

    So there you have it. Five reasons why you should do what you can to go camping. There are lots of other reasons to get away and get outside. Which ones should we have added to this list? Let us know in the comments below!