Explore!

The high pitched melody of birds break the silence as you weave through the unbeaten track. Shards of sunlight spear through the trees that tower above you. Butterflies dance through the air as the crisp, country air whistles past your face. Humming insects. Rustling wildlife. Leaves crackling beneath your feet. A blanket of unspoilt greenery lines the horizon, waiting to be explored…

Wow. I’ve made that sound good. Disclaimer: Not all places are like that.

Countryside. Forests. Trails. Canals. Lakes. Rivers. These terms soon turn alien to us as we venture out on another pounding run on the pavements. We can become so wrapped up in our daily work and repetitive routines that we forget about the world around us. We can end up in a little bubble and our eyes rarely get the chance to appreciate nature. Appreciate the world that all most of us are trying to protect.

Cure your exercise boredom and explore the unbeaten track. We all know the hardest part is stepping out of the door, so make sure that step is towards something that’ll give you freedom, adventure and relaxation merged into one (no pressure nature). The UK is so underrated – probably because the weather can be so unpredictable. There are SO many places here that I want to visit; the Peak District, Brecon Beacons, Lake District… the list goes on.


REASONS TO HEAD FOR THE TRAILS

Forget about pace. Ditch the smart watch. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in speed/distance/calories/steps etc. Forget about it. Don’t worry about how fast, or slow, you’re moving. Speed is completely irrelevant! I’m afraid there’s no medal for beating Larry and his dog. Just relax, look up and cherish the world around you.

Views. Let’s face it…it looks better on social media. Your eyes deserve to witness the underrated beauty of the UK. And, the picturesque countryside is a little better than the view of your local Greggs… (Although, I prefer the smell of sausage rolls to the smell of cow poo). 

Adventure…especially if you get lost. Even the shortest of walks/runs can feel like you’re away on an adventure. It can feel like you’ve been away for ages! Exploring nature provides you with a sense of escape and freedom.

Enjoyment. Taking a trip onto the trails gives you a real sense of enjoyment. Charge up hills. Roll down hills. Jump in puddles. Splash through mud. Paddle in the river. Skim stones on the lake. Weave in between trees. Have fun!

Less impact. Give your bones a break from the repetitive pounding of your favourite street paths. It’s a no brainer! Softer surfaces have less impact on your body. It may help your recovery time and relieve those aches and pains.

Clear mind. Headspace. Inhale peace, exhale stress. A step into the countryside is a step away from the frantic stress of a city. Escape the hustle and bustle of work and take a deep breath of the countryside. Switch off. Relax the mind.

BUT WHERE?

Check out national trust sites, local parks, forest, canals. You don’t need to travel miles. I’ve found some of my routes by using these sites:

Start easy. Do a walk/run to a point and back. Or, find a park and do a loop. As you build confidence, start exploring a little more – go left instead of right etc. (Try not to get too lost!!)

I need more places to visit! Where’s your favourite place to explore? 

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