elevating your mood. Are you more of a walker, hiker, biker? Try to stay close to

home and explore your neighborhood or town, socially dis- tancing and avoiding touching surfaces. Staying close to home reduces the chances that you will need to stop for a restroom (many are closed) or for water/snacks. Take water and snacks with you and a small kit of wet wipes or toilet paper for emer- gencies and please, practice Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics and pack out your trash and waste, always. Avoid crowded trailheads and popular spots; opt for lesser known trails and parks and try to go at “off” times to avoid the crowds. Now may not be the time to try something risky (like

whitewater kayaking) on your own, so keep your activities within your skill set and abilities, which lessens the chance for injury. We really don’t want to be in hospitals right now or taxing our healthcare system further when situations can be avoided. If your local lake is open, take your kayak and enjoy some zen time on the water. Most lake fees are currently waived to encourage folks to get outdoors.

• explore your yard in new ways. Set up your hammock in a nice shady spot and practice sketching nature. Take a bird ID book or use the Merlin App and learn to ID the birds that frequent your yard. Utilize a plant ID book or the PlantSnap App to ID the plants that grow in your yard and neighborhood. You may be surprised at what you thought were weeds are actually homeopathic and have been used for hundreds of years for various remedies and reasons. Become a cloud watcher. There is a lot to be said for allowing your mind to flow freely like the clouds skittering across the sky—you may have new ideas pop up from nowhere—go wherever the clouds lead your mind

• take your morning coffee, breakfast, meals outdoors. One of the benefits of this pandemic is it has given the gift of time to some of us - time to slow down and enjoy our homes, our yards, our neighborhoods. Invite neighbors over and have them bring their own food/drink. Everyone stays 6 ft. apart and you have outside visiting time. If you have a fire pit, use it, or dig one in your yard

• camp outside in your yard to get used to that gear you plan to hike the Appalachian Trial with (using it at home is a great

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way to familiarize yourself with your gear before you commit to a long weekend, or longer). It gives you a chance to learn how to use it and make sure it will serve you well. If you take your kids outside to camp they will love it! Or, if the weather is not favorable, set up the tent and camp indoors, that’s a lot of fun too.

• have movie night and project it on the garage door. Or dial back time and teach your kids shadow puppets, charades, old school games, play cards outside by the fire. There is a lot of opportunity to create some tender and lasting memories during this time with your family

• if you live alone, reach out to others who also live alone or are severely isolated due to being high risk. Send them hand- written notecards with nature themes. Video chat with them outdoors (both parties are outside during). Getting back to good communication and checking in on one another is crucial

• re-connect with outdoor activities you may not have done in a while, as long as you can do them safely. Jumping rope is a tremendous cardio workout that you can do with very little space, outdoors. Begin a daily Earthing practice. Earthing has been proven to be very beneficial to our health, and now, we have the time to commit to a daily practice, all it takes is walk- ing or sitting barefoot with your feet connected to the ground for about 30 minutes.

Tips for Responsibly Getting Outdoors during Covid-19:

• check websites of trails, parks before heading out to see if they have had to close due to overcrowding, avoid heavily used areas

• be flexible, be kind, be patient. This situation is stressful for everyone.

• practice Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics

• avoid going outdoors in groups larger than five regardless of what the law is, smaller groups have less impact on the wild- life, plants, ecology in general and lessens chances of transmis- sion of viruses. Practice social distancing even outdoors

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Offering early risk detection for diabetes, heart attack and stroke, along with natural solutions to reduce risk.

Locations in Clemmons & Greensboro 336.766.0888 • gentle chiropractic • acupuncture • nutrition 336-885-0557

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