Get Out More This Year

Joe's Valley - Uncle Sam's 2“Have you been getting outside?”

“Not as much as I’d like.”

It’s a recurring dialogue between outdoor enthusiasts. Everyone wishes that they could spend more time outdoors. This is true whether you get outside once every couple of months, or if you’re outside every week. Of course, there are a few people who couldn’t spend more time outside unless they sold their home and moved into a tent. However, there are plenty of people who could be spending more time outdoors if they made an effort.

There are a number of things that can get in the way of spending time outside. Bad weather, extreme temperatures, and sheer laziness are just a few of the things keeping people indoors. If your New Year’s resolution is to spend more time outside this year, here are a few ways that you can make that happen.

Make it a priority. No one’s forcing you to go outside. You don’t have to do it if you don’t want to. But if you really want to get outside more often this year, you should make it a priority. There’s nothing like a big game on Sunday or a late night on Friday to convince you that you should spend the weekend in town. Just keep in mind that your time spent out in nature will be much more productive and rewarding than eating pizza and sitting on the couch, or boozing into the wee hours of the morning.

Think realistically about how often you can get outside. Is it likely that you can get outside on a weekly basis, or is it more practical to get outside once a month? Consider how often you want to get out, and weigh that against how often you think you can actually make that happen. Heavy workloads, deadlines on papers, or family life can make it difficult to get out every single weekend. If you know that you will have obligations that will keep you in town, don’t set your goal so high that you can’t meet it.

You don’t have to go on epic adventures in order to get outside. One of the great things about living in Northwest Arkansas is the abundance of trails, rivers, and rocks that are all in close proximity to town. Make a quick day trip, or go for an afternoon hike. Sure, multiple day ventures in the woods are a blast, but it’s not all or nothing when it comes to getting outdoors.

Once you’ve set a realistic goal for your outdoor adventures, make sure that you follow through with it. Don’t let a questionable forecast deter you from spending time outdoors. If that rain holds off, you will be kicking yourself for not getting outside, and if you get rained on, you will probably have a good time anyway.

Under no circumstances should you let a little laziness keep you from spending time outside. If you’re “not psyched”, “not about it”, or “less than enthused”, get outside anyway. You will be glad that you did.

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