One Hour Outside November 2016 | Final Thoughts

posted in: Outdoors, Personal | 6

Back at the end of September, when I was sat at Ordnance Survey HQ being introduced to the world of map making (read about my visit), I practically spat my tea out when I was told that research showed that a huge percentage of people will not walk if it will take them more than 15 minutes. Shocking. Learning this fact lead to setting myself – and you – the challenge to spend at least One Hour Outside everyday in November.

One Hour Outside - Lincoln Brayford Pool in the Sun

Brayford Pool and Lincoln Cathedral in the bright November sunshine.

It sounded hugely simple when I typed it. The premise certainly was, there wasn’t anything complicated about it for sure. And one hour is a very short period of time; we have 24 of them a day and even with working and chores and other things, it still doesn’t sound like a big deal. But as I and many of you anticipated, my One Hour Outside campaign was much harder in practice.

The ChallengeWeek 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

And of course that was why I set the challenge. I wanted to provide some kind of inspiration and motivation to actually leave the comfort and cosines of the indoors during a month that is notoriously grey and miserable, and get some actual fresh air and natural vitamin D. It has been scientifically proven (read about it here) that getting outside is good for us – our body, mind and soul all benefit from spending time outside. Even though I already know I love to get outside as much as possible, setting a challenge was a very simple way to make it into more of a habit and less of an occasion.

I’ve had some great outdoors experiences this month. I was very fortunate to have a week off early on in November and was able to really make the most of the challenge by heading off to the seaside for some proper outdoors time. There have been some beautiful autumn days and a few heavy frosts, turning the scenery blue and sparkly and even eerie at times. But I’ve also struggled on long busy working days when it’s been very wet and windy outside; I hate it when the weather saps all energy and motivation from my being.

One Hour Outside - Santa on a Boat in Lincoln

Santa on a Boat in Lincoln. Yes.

I have to say I think the best bit of running One Hour Outside for me is that many of you also thought it was a good idea and joined in. I have really loved getting your updates on twitter, comments on my blog posts and photos on instagram. Your comments and updates have helped keep me motivated, and it’s been fun to converse with you on something I feel so strongly about. I hope you’ve enjoyed the community of One Hour Outside; please feel free to put your final thoughts now the month has ended in the comments below.

The “official” challenge might have ended, but I do hope you’ll take something from this month long experiment and keep up with your daily dose of the outdoors through December and into January. Keep using the hashtag #OneHourOutside and tweeting me with your updates, it’s fun to hear what you’re getting up to. And you never know, I could reprise the challenge in February, another notoriously difficult month for time outside. Watch this space!

6 Responses

  1. Allysse Riordan

    Although I haven’t really shared anything online, I have been for an hour outside each day in November. And I’ve really enjoyed the experience. I have to admit it’s been very easy most days as I was then unemployed so had time on my hands. But there were days when the weather was miserable and I had to force myself out. Those had been the difficult days but every time I stepped out of the house for a walk/skate/cycle I never regretted it 🙂

    I’m definitely going to do my best to carry the challenge over and remember to spend time outdoors everyday. Even if some days that will be just for my commute.

    • Splodz

      Really pleased to hear you found the challenge useful and were able to get your one hour outside even on the miserable days. Here’s to a December full of outdoors time for you too!

  2. lovinglifeinwelliesblog

    Aww well done! I got as much outdoor time as possible Oct / Nov but illness and my pup coming into seasons means December has been a bit of a no start and it’s looking like this till after Christmas :O

    I have just signed up a 1000 miles challenge for next which included walks 2.75 miles a day to clock up your mileage so hoping to exceed that.

    • Splodz

      I’ve seen that 1000 mile challenge and I am very tempted. I stopped tracking my walks because I was getting stressed out about the time and distance rather than just enjoying the walk, but maybe it’s time to set myself something again.

  3. M.Barrett

    It’s sad but I can quite believe the stat about the fact that people won’t walk if its more than 15 mins. I know people who drive to the shop despite it being only 5 minutes away. I was brought up in an area of Lancashire where just about every street was on a hill, and I didn’t learn how to drive until I was almost 30. Walking was a way of life.

    • Splodz

      Walking still should be a way of life. I know there are some people who need to drive even for very short distances, but the vast majority of us are quite able to get to the local shop or School or our workplace or somewhere else without relying on an engine.

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