Backpacking is a Great Escape
By: Todd Smekens
BLOG – Backpacking is a great escape from everyday life. The simplicity of putting on your backpack and heading out into the great unknown is the best vacation that an introvert could ask for. Whether you bring along one of your closest friends or opt to go out alone, it is a great way to spend your time while avoiding the chaos of other people.
There are plenty of good reasons why spending time in the outdoors is better for your peace of mind then forcing yourself to explore a crowded city. The positive effects of nature on the human brain and body are virtually endless.
For those that like to spend time alone, putting in your headphones and going shopping can sometimes feel the closest thing to being completely by yourself. Preparing for your journey into the backcountry can be made to feel like a walking meditation. Put on your favorite music and collect the things that you will need to make your trip a success. Keep it as simple as possible to avoid weighing yourself down. Choose a lightweight tent with reliable poles and zippers, a backpack with a sturdy frame and the sleeping pad that will keep you comfortable.
In terms of absorbing sunlight, there is no better reason to get outside. Even though you may not feel like spending time with others, you can still be a victim of being lonely. A major benefit of vitamin D absorption is the reduced risk of the onset of depression. The sun offers plentiful amounts of vitamin D to all areas of skin that are exposed. Your body benefits from vitamin D intake in many different ways such as:
- Bone strengthening
- Lowering risk of diabetes
- Stimulate weight loss
- Lower risk of cancer
- Increased immunity
- Reduce chronic pain
If you are a classic introvert and tend to avoid people, outdoor exercise is a safe place for you. Mountain biking, kayaking, trail running are all great ways to escape the crowds, but backpacking allows you the solace of being alone for days at a time. Go out and climb mountains to hear the sound of only your heart beating for miles. The surge of endorphin and adrenaline that you feel as a result of summiting is what your opposing personality feels when gaining public recognition. See what your body is capable of and do it for your own peace of mind, and no one else. The more that you get outside chasing trail, the further that you can go from society the next time around.
Disappearing into the woods, desert or otherwise allows you the sweet bliss of silence that many introverts crave. The further you walk, the quieter it gets. It allows you time for introspection or to just let your mind wander into the wind with the bird songs that surround you. While silence may be viewed as intimidating or unwelcome to others, it is held sacred by introverts. Research has shown that introverts get bored easily, but there is much to keep you distracted while out in the wilderness. Listen for the different bugs and animals that surround you, how the wind moves the leaves and how it feels on your skin.
As an introvert in a social setting, you would naturally retreat to find a quiet space for yourself. Do yourself a favor and take a break from the crowds and head out into the wilderness with nothing but your backpack and a map to guide you.