If you experienced a cold winter or chilly spring, there’s a good chance you’re more than ready to get out and enjoy the warm summer weather.
And if you love being physically fit, organizing a get-together for you and some of your closest friends to enjoy some type of outdoor activity together, followed up by a picnic lunch, will surely help you enjoy the great outdoors and create long-lasting memories.
To have the most fun, as well as safest and enjoyable outdoor experience possible, consider the following must-have items, foods and clothing:
Don’t Forget to Pack
Between the hike, Ultimate Frisbee and picnic lunch in the park near the trailhead, you’ll likely be out in the elements for a while. The day before your fun adventure, set aside several basic items that will allow you to brave the elements and enjoy your time outdoors. This way, if you’re missing anything, you’ll have plenty of time to run to the store.
For example, bring sunscreen and reapply it often. The spray-on versions are super easy to apply and can be found in supermarkets and big box stores alike. If the weather report calls for clouds, you’ll still want to apply plenty of sunscreen. Because while you might think the shade is a great way to protect your skin from the damaging rays of the sun, you can be outside on a cloudy day and still get sunburned and overexposed to the elements.
Other items to pack for the day include baby wipes that will help you freshen up after the hike and before you eat, as well as hand sanitizer, a large blanket or two in case the picnic tables are all taken — or to use as a tablecloth — a first-aid kit, bottle opener and trash bags so you can clean up when you are done.
Create Refreshing Meal Recipes
You and your group will probably be hungry after finishing up your outdoor activities and games. While traditional picnic foods can vary, make it a point to bring items that are lighter and healthier.
A great option that will be sure to be a hit with everyone is to create a salad in a Mason jar, which can be compiled a day ahead of time and include dressing on the side to prevent the other ingredients from getting soggy. Just make sure to store your Mason jars in a cooler with lots of ice or ice packs, so they stay cool while you’re hiking or enjoying other activities.
Indeed, the combination of garbanzo beans, quinoa, grape tomatoes, onions and leaf lettuce with a healthy olive-oil and wine vinegar-based dressing will fill you up after a long morning of physical activity but not leave you feeling too stuffed.
For any main dishes, go for healthy and easy-to-pack options like turkey and lean roast beef sandwiches on whole grain bread, chips and salsa, and plenty of beverages including lots of bottled water.
Dress for the Day
Since you’ll be getting in a lot of physical activity, be sure to wear appropriate clothing for the weather and your workout. Additionally, regardless of whether you’re expecting sun or clouds, bring along a lightweight jacket. While most people feel they don’t need a jacket on a warm day, it can help to protect your skin from the wind, as well as any summer showers that decide to pop up out of nowhere.
A windbreaker made from waterproof fabric is a perfect choice and it may also feature built-in protection from the sun. For example, a number of seasonal windbreakers and lightweight jackets include UPF 50 sun protection that’s part of the fabric, and these jackets are also typically windproof, waterproof and breathable.
Enjoy Your Time Together!
Your outdoor adventure day is sure to be a hit with you and your party and will could very well become a regular outing with your buddies. By being well-prepared and having basic supplies, as well as great food and the proper clothing on hand, the day will also be safe, stress-free and smooth, regardless of what Mother Nature throws your way.