Let’s begin with a simple question. When was the last time you went on a picnic?
For many of us, the answer is somewhere along the lines of “Last year” or “A few years ago.” Picnicking is one of the most easily accessible activities, but when we do make it out with our favourite blanket and a selection of tasty lunch treats, a picnic becomes an event. They stand out in our memories and leave us feeling rejuvenated, but why?
Today, we’re going to dive into exactly what makes picnics so special, the surprising health benefits you can get from eating a meal outside, and how to put together a picnic of your own to enjoy.
Reconnecting With Nature
One of Vettä’s crowning features is its location in a beautiful, natural hardwood forest, and your average lunch picnic benefits from the same principle. Spending time in or around untouched greenspaces, where trees and other vegetation have been allowed to flourish, is linked with reduced risks of developing high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stress, and even type II diabetes. Even if you only have thirty minutes to enjoy your food, the time you spend enjoying the sunshine and fresh air will leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed, and rejuvenated.
The warmth of the sunshine does wonders for your body, too. Not dissimilar from our own thermotherapy program here at the spa, the warm sunlight signals your body to reduce the production of stress hormones. This, in turn, allows your body to relax, improving your circulation and lifting your mood.
De-Stress With a Miniature Vacation
A picnic is like a bite-sized vacation. You can focus on the quality of your company, whether that’s family or friends, without the distractions that are often found in regular day-to-day routines. The peaceful environment lends itself easily to meditation, conversation, and reflection. In fact, treating yourself to a solo picnic is an immediate pick-me-up. Picnics are cost-effective since they usually don’t require much investment and can be enjoyed in public spaces. This means that while you’re relaxing, you won’t be worrying about the state of your pocketbook.
Putting Together Your Own Picnic
Picnics are adaptable, which means that they can become anything you need them to be. In the summer of 2020, for example, they provide a way to safely gather for lunch with a friend, since both social distancing and the avoidance of food contamination is an easy and already-established part of picnicking.
What Food Should You Bring?
An easy way to make any picnic memorable is to bring along some of the freshest fruits and vegetables of the season. In Ontario, good end-of-summer produce includes:
If you’re picnicking with friends (and you absolutely should when possible, since that’s part of the fun of a picnic), arrange for a sort of potluck spread where everyone makes and brings a special dish. Single-serving portions aren’t just easy to distribute; they also frequently make for an extremely picturesque spread.
What Gear Will You Need?
There can be a lot of moving parts – plates, food, beverages, a portable radio – that go into a perfect picnic, so making sure you know how you’ll transport everything can be a big help. A large bag or two is usually enough to carry everything. You’ll also want to bring a blanket or two. If social distancing needs to be observed, your own personal blanket serves as a helpful reminder of safe boundaries. You’ll also want to bring all the necessities required for eating, such as:
- Containers for the leftovers
- Serving utensils
- Plates or bowls
Warmth and Relaxation at Vettä
While picnics are a great way to de-stress on your own, we’re looking forward to helping provide you with an oasis from the work world. You’ll be able to enjoy traditional Finnish saunas, fresh, local cuisine, and care from trained masseurs.
For more information on Vettä, or to stay up-to-date on our construction progress, sign up for our mailing list or send us an online message.