S'Mores For One: A Lesson In Camping Solo

Posted on July 19, 2017 by Nicole Rauner | 0 comments

There can be a lot of looming fears when camping for the first time by yourself. There’s no one to lend you the toothpaste you forgot or assure you that the growling sound during the night was a nearby camper and not a bear.

My number one tip for preparing for a solo, weekend camping trip starts before you leave your air-conditioned house: don’t over pack. There’s a lot of stuff that you already have to bring like a tent, sleeping bag, pillow, backpack and all the gadgets. You don’t need three pairs of jeans for camping in the summer and you don’t need eight hot dogs (why don’t they come in lesser quantity?).

OVERPACKING TRIP

Camping is all about going back to basics, or in this case Asics. If you’re looking at your wardrobe and realize you simply need a pair of gym shorts, a breathable tank top and a zip up jacket that will do its job, Asics is king. It’s an affordable brand that makes quality clothes for the people that aren’t so flashy. It makes for great hiking clothes that are easy to wash and go right back on for the next adventure.

ASICS WEAR

Another thing you can’t go camping without: A flashlight. The 1TAC Tactical Flashlight was not only a saving grace for late night bathroom breaks but also for providing peace of mind. If I got lost I could adjust the power of the light or use the strobe feature to harness attention. While it was mostly used to see my gourmet chef skills at making S'mores for one (the secret is to use a Reeses peanut butter cup) I liked knowing I’d be able to find help even if I was hiking alone.

REESESSMORES

The next essential? A LifeStraw Portable Water Filter. It’s easy to waste your water supply on cleaning your hands, dishes or soaking a bandana to feel the cooling breeze when you tie it on. The best part about LifeStraw is it makes any freshwater safe to drink. I used it in the waterfall I hiked to the top of and in the river the waterfall turned into at the bottom. Most passerby thought I was Bear Grylls and were very jealous that I could make nature a portable water bottle.



My last tip is to simply embrace the benefits of camping by yourself. There are obvious positives up front like not sharing food and taking a nap in the middle of the day because no one’s dragging you to the next spot. But being in nature with just yourself to rely on is freeing and brings a great sense of accomplishment. You’re able to not care what strangers might think about the only adult jumping off the dock like a child or using a selfie stick to prove you made it to the top of the mountain. You’re allowed to make every choice based on what you want to get out of the experience, and who couldn’t use more of that?

Posted in 1TAC, Asics, Camping, LifeStraw, Outdoors, Smores

The Secret Weapon the Aussies have Developed

Posted on July 12, 2017 by Kiel Welk | 0 comments

If you've ever been to the land down under, (where women glow and men plunder), then you'll know how deadly the land, sea, and animals can be. 

Here's a quick list of things that will either kill you or ruin your weekend:

In the interest of equal time, and to not dissuade you from booking a vacation there, here is...

A short list of great things that come from Australia, as per my friend Nathan:

"Crocodile Dundee, AC/DC, the Sydney Opera House, Crocodile Dundee 2, Crocodile Dundee's knife, and Heath Ledger... in that order... oh, and Jim Jeffries, he's pretty rad!"

At Proozy the other day, we got heaps and heaps of products from this company called "2XU" from Australia.

Here's the top 3 things you need to know about them:

1. It's Pronounced "Two Times You" and NOT "Two XU"

2. They make performance workout clothes.

3. They don't fool around.

Full disclosure: I've never been to Australia, and I've known about them for a few months now, but didn't realize the breadth and depth of they're products. 

Knowing the benefits of compression clothing, (check out the archives for the Compression post where I put on the tightest shirt I've ever worn) I was glad to see how many different products they make. The mission statement is to "Advance human performance through the development of world-leading athletic garments" for activities such as cycling, wrestling, swimming, running, yoga, basketball, and so many other sports. It's a pretty lofty goal, but wouldn't you be motivated to move faster if you were surrounded by air, land, and sea by some of the most dangerous creatures on the planet?

The most dangerous creature from Australia

After a quick glance at their website (here) you can see they put more R&D into their products than went into a smartphone and they are more connected to professional athletes than Jerry Maguire.  

I'm not going to waste a bunch of your time with trying to explain the benefits of the different materials and fabrics that they use or how awesome they are. You can learn all about it on their site and they will undoubtedly do a better job of it. There's nothing wrong with being loyal to a brand of athletic gear, but 2XU is doing more to earn your business. I implore you to check out the huge group of new 2XU products here at Proozy.com

Finally, I'll leave you with this. There's an old proverb from Tanzania that translates to:

The person who has not traveled widely thinks their mother is the only cook.

Posted in 2XU, Fashion, Fitness, gym clothes, Outdoors, Proozy, Research

The Bonding Nature of... Well... Nature, I Guess.

Posted on July 05, 2017 by Kiel Welk | 0 comments

Some weeks back, a few of us at Proozy were having some water-cooler talk about the ultimate camping spot. All the usual suspects were there: Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, and even the 50 yard line of the new US Bank Stadium. (With a caveat of "not during a Vikings game, of course"). Then someone offered the most exclusive woods retreat known throughout the nation: Camp David in rural Maryland.

Not knowing much about the little-talked-about Presidential retreat, I did what all lazy people do: I checked Wikipedia. As it turns out, since it was built in 1935, every president has visited and most have used it to broker deals with other foreign leaders.

(I realize this is the internet, but let's put politics aside for a few minutes, please?)

Here's a short list of Important Campers or Events

  • FDR & Winston Churchill met in 1943 to likely make fun of an Austrian guy's silly mustache, among other things.
  • Eisenhower had his entire security council meet there. You know at least one person spotted a squirrel and made some sort of Boris and Natasha spying joke.
  • The Kennedy children rode horses, while JFK preferred boats and the ocean.
  • LBJ met with the Australian and Canadian Prime Ministers
  • Nixon frequently went to try and find a way out of Vietnam with his staff. He also decided the lodge needed a swimming pool. (Weird Fact: previously mentioned Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt disappeared while swimming in time between his Camp David visit and Nixon building the pool).
The Swimming Pool at Camp David
  • Carter hosted the Egyptian and Israeli leaders to work out some differences and came up with the "Camp David Accords" in what is perhaps the most famous peace deal to come out of the wooded retreat.
  • Reagan spent the most amount of time there of any president, and who could blame him. He also hosted British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and hopefully talked about their favorite Billy Joel albums.
  • George H.W. Bush saw his daughter Dorothy get married there.
  • Obama even held the "G8 Summit" on the grounds of Camp David in 2012

Camp Counselors 

The retreat into nature is as essential to world leaders as it is to us at Proozy. There seems to be a strong bonding effect when people surround themselves with nature. We let our guard down a little and actually hear what people have to say a little more than in formal settings. These were the sentiments that were filling our heads and hearts as we returned from our holiday vacations this summer. Also, that we have tons and tons of products to make your next camping trip that much easier. See for yourself HERE.

Posted in

Campfire Breakfasts and You

Posted on June 28, 2017 by Kiel Welk | 0 comments

Camping has always been a big deal in my family. It still is. As a matter of fact, roughly a quarter of the items on my wedding gift registry were camping related.

It seems like the evening meal around the campfire gets all of the attention. Everyone has a recipe for "THE GREATEST" something or other dish that their parents made for them when they were children. But one thing that could use a little shout out is the campfire breakfast. I've noticed that my parents' generation has developed an appreciation for this as well. Perhaps they're on to something. 

Here is a very biased look at what your campfire breakfast says about you:

Pancakes

You either have children, or you're a 1930s homesteader that loves their "Flapjacks" and the Gold Standard.

Avocado Toast

In a standard kitchen, this is simple. You toast some bread and cut up an avocado. Most people don't stop there. They go on to post several images of it on social media with a multitude of hashtags. The difficulty here is that toasting bread over a campfire can take some exacting skills. 

(Sidebar: Avocado Toast is a perfect example of celebration without much effort. It takes very little work or skill to make, but people will express their mastery in the kitchen and refined palate because they enjoy the dish.)

Campfire Potatoes

You have a simple palate, but in a good way. It's a basic dish that doesn't need a bunch of spices or oils to be great. It just takes time to achieve that glorious American Fries taste.

 

Eggs In A Bag 

This could go a lot of ways. You could be the science wizard that enjoys the odd way of cooking, or the Pintrest Planner, or even still the McGyver-style cook that just makes do with the tools at hand. Either way, it's a great way to handle what could be a messy clean up. You just toss the bag in the trash and go about your day.

 

Breakfast Sandwiches

You're the "Pie Iron Guy". You bought these things and you love them. This is their time to shine. Everything goes in there and you've made every meal in that thing: Pizza, grilled cheese, French toast, and EVERY MANNER OF DESSERT KNOWN TO FIRE. This was the absolute pinnacle of cooking over the campfire for me as child. It was like cheap, street magician and my stomach was the poor rube from the farm fields in the big city for the first time. 

Cereal

You've either got a full day ahead of you or you're not a morning person, or both. Not to pass judgement, but cereal has always felt like a cop out in terms of breakfast options, so why cheat yourself? 

Whatever you're waking up with this camping season, enjoy it. You've decided to enjoy the outdoors, so why stop there? Put in some effort and embrace the challenge of cooking great meals with limited resources.

Posted in

Picture Day - Grade School - 1994

Posted on June 21, 2017 by Kiel Welk | 0 comments

Picture Day in school was never a big deal for me. Even in high school, right up to senior year, I was typically photographed wearing whatever I happened to be wearing that day.

Before social media, people would put some thought into how they would look for the image that would stand for an entire year of their lives, namely their yearbook photo. Responsible parents would arrange for fresh haircuts and new outfits. Thoughts and concerns were paid to presentation to their child. 

The following picture day atrocities could have been avoided had someone taken the proper precautions by buying the most versatile shirt to ever come through the doors here at Proozy.com. The Under Armour Boys Polo Shirt. Pick yours out today and save "Picture Day" for yearbooks to come.

Here’s a quick rundown of picture day troubles I have been exposed to:

  • A guy I went to middle school with took the local news guy approach to formality by wearing a suit jacket on top and basketball short on the bottom. (See below).

  • First or second grade saw me wearing a shirt that said “Bad to the Bone” on the front. The problem was that the frame of the photo cut off the “to the Bone” part of the shirt. Hilarity ensued.
  • Also first or second grade saw my friend, Nate, wearing his scout uniform on picture day. Funny thing was that our scout meeting wasn’t for another 2 days, he just thought he looked better in uniform.
  • High school saw me wearing a shirt that I made in a graphic arts class the previous semester. The shirt said in big bold letters, “Happiness is Being Italian” inside of a funky little design. This was a very topical inside joke for about 30 people at the time. Looking back on it, it seems a bit strange as I am 3/4ths German in my heritage and 0% Italian, (as far as I know).
  • Also, in high school came a group of guys, who were to soon drop out, attempt to wear shirts with a myriad of problems for the beleaguered, and underpaid photographer and the school administrators. Doug had a shirt with a pot leaf. Darrell had a swear word dead center just below the collar. Jon had a black market Bart Simpson shirt with offensive hand gestures. But the real winner was Aaron who simply wore a Spice Girls t-shirt. The reason he was barred from wearing the shirt was not due to antiquated gender roles or staff members being arbiters of taste. The reason he was asked to change was the way he customized the graphic. He had taken a black marker and placed an “X” over the faces of each and every Spice Girl except for the redhead, Geri Halliwell. I guess he had a thing for redheads.

That was the year where 6 guys wore shirts saying FHS Phys. Ed. (Who could have seen that coming?)

Anyways, don't let things fall to chance and have your kid make a poor decision. Pick up a few of these Under Armour Youth Polo Shirts for good measure. Think of it as a social embarrassment insurance plan.

Posted in Back To School Clothes Under Armour, Picture Day, Polo Shirt, Proozy, Under Armour, Under Armour Youth, Youth Polo Shirt

What Golf Means to Fathers

Posted on June 16, 2017 by Alex Case | 0 comments

By James Stones

Have you found the perfect gift for Father's day just yet? In a recent post on Proozy, we compiled a short list of gift ideas that won't force you to spend too much. Knowing that the U.S. Open concludes on the same day as Father's Day each year, we thought we'd talk about what golf might mean for the man in our lives.


Much is said about how being a father limits a lot of the activities that men used to enjoy before they started a family. An article by Forbes magazine even claims that fatherhood is "killing" the sport.


Fathers and golf


The relationship between family and golf, however, may not be as bad as it might appear. After all, we're looking forward to the U.S. Open this year on the same day as Father's Day.

The tournament isn't alone in celebrating fatherhood. Another golf event, the PNC Father-Son Challenge, which takes place in Orlando towards the end of each year, shines the spotlight on this important aspiration for men.

Golf website Play Your Course states that this event, held annually at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes Resort, gathers former players of the PGA Tour who have won a Major or a Players Championship.

And while not a lot of people can play at the level that they witness in this event (not to mention the luxury of playing such a beautiful course!), one thing they can and do is enjoy the way it underscores the more universal pleasures of golf, along with the rewards of fatherhood.

fathersdaygolfblog


Finding the balance

As this article on Golfwrx emphasizes, beyond making shots or putts, golf is about making the time—especially after men start their own families.

This fact makes the game even more rewarding. Rather than being held back by family obligations, the occasional Saturday or Sunday at the local course becomes a way for dad to keep fit and sane. Furthermore, rather than seeing it as a sacrifice or just another goal or task to accomplish, golf becomes a chance to reconnect with friends and with nature.

“If I never played golf,” the insightful Golfwrx piece quotes a family man, “my wife would probably be happier. Would definitely be happier. But I wouldn’t be."

Golf and children

As children grow up, golf can be a way to mix things up in terms of ways to bond. This doesn't mean that parents have to set their sights on training their children to be future champions, (although there's nothing wrong with that!).


There simply is so much to gain from exploring beautiful environments with the little ones, especially when work eats up so much time and even valuable weekends are spent watching television screens.

The sport may not be the cheapest way to go about doing this, but it might just be an investment that's worth making, as this New York Times piece emphasizes. Considering how perceptive children can be, having the kids around your golf club when they're old enough can bridge gaps in their understanding about what their folks are up to during their time away from the home.

And if the father's lucky, the kids might get into the game, too.

Posted in Flashcat Golf, James Stones

Cabin Life in 2017

Posted on June 14, 2017 by Kiel Welk | 0 comments

My grandpa used to delight in telling the same joke about being lost in the wilderness.

The beginning was always different, but the ending was always the same. He would say, "So then... (pause for dramatic effect) giving up all hope of finding my way out, or being rescued, I pulled out my deck of playing cards and dealt a game of solitaire. Sure enough, 2 minutes later someone was over my shoulder telling me what move to make next."

A deck of cards was absolutely a cabin essential for him and the rest of the family. Over the years, I've heard adults fondly remember their weekend trips and vacations at "The Cabin" being filled with card games with friends and family. So, I figured it was time for a short list of essential items for cabin life in 2017.

Columbia Men's Cascades Explorer Long Sleeve Shirt

This is a great cabin shirt because of its versatility. On those cool mornings and late evenings you can put the sleeves down to keep warm and the bugs off of your arms. Then, as the day heats up, the sleeves have tabs to hold them rolled up, but still providing some sun protection. In general, it's just a good rough and tumble kind of shirt that looks right at home in the cabin. 

Kutmaster WrenchHead 34-Function Multi-Tool 

This one is a no-brainer. Every cabin needs a multi-tool to handle all the little challenges that come up on a daily basis. The WrenchHead multi-tool is a great product to have and put in a glove box of a car, tacklebox, or in that one drawer in every cabin that contains everything from matches to koozies. Besides, you'd be surprised what the right tool in the right set of hands can accomplish. They made a whole TV show about such a scenario. (Pick one up for just $24)

 

1Tac Gear

So, you're sitting around the campfire and wood is running low. You get up to split a few more logs away from the fire and the light is low. Wouldn't it be nice to have a clear view of where you're swinging the axe? Do yourself a favor and pick up the headlamp. The survival bracelet is key in this situation, as well. As is the handheld flashlight, but the headlamp is perfect for this setting.

Campfire Jacket

Campfires at the cabin are great, but it seems like I always bake on one side and freeze on the other. It seems strange to think about a jacket in the summer time, but it's nice to have something on you back and arms to keep the bugs away. The North Face Veranda is great because it's super comfortable and very affordable WITH THIS PRICE OR CODE. And the Under Armour Hoodie is one of those staple wardrobe items that works well pretty much anywhere you put it. Use the code: NF54 to pick up the Veranda. And, use: UA28 on the Hoodie to get it for essentially half price.

Beverage Container

There are 3 standing rules on the boat at the family cabin:
1. No Shoes on the boat
2. No glass bottles on the boat
3. Everyone tubes
The no glass thing makes a lot of sense when everyone is barefoot. So one way around that is the Eco Vessel Boulder TriMax Triple Insulated Bottle. Whether it's staying hydrated, or keeping your favorite adult beverage chilled, this is the way to go. The only drawback is good luck finding it if you drop it in the woods. But I guess that's the risk you run with anything camouflage. Live by the sword, Die by the sword. Pick one up for $19.99.

Just For Good Measure...

  
Fireworks, Fishing, and Ugly Hats.
 

Posted in Active Living, Cabin, Cabin Culture, Eco Vessel, EcoVessel, Fleece, Mens, Outdoors, Proozy, The North Face, Veranda

1 2 3 6 Next »