Getting outside is always a good idea. It can help to clear the mind, move the body and recharge the batteries. And if nothing else, it can be so much fun! So when Ordnance Survey calls people outside for National Get Outside Day, Jennifer Hikes follows – are you coming?
Ordnance Survey, the national mapping agency of the United Kingdom, has created the National Get Outside Day to motivate people to get active in the great outdoors. The goal is to get 1 million participants out and about on the same day, in 2018 on the 30th of September. In order to achieve that, their ambassadors, the GetOutside Champions, have created events all over Britain for people to join. They also help interested people to create their own events to multiply the effects even further.
Find an event near you on https://getoutside.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/guides/national-getoutside-day/
In case you’d rather get creative yourself or you cannot find anything in a convenient location: Why not embark on your very own adventure on National Get Outside Day. Explore, have fun, take pictures, post them and become part of the Get Outside Community. Here are 10 ideas to get you started:
1. Walk home
Have you ever wondered how it feels to get yourself home from somewhere when you have just your body to achieve that? Time to find out. Depending on what your life looks like, the distances and your capacity, pick a spot that you frequently spend time at and then walk yourself home. Spots could be your workplace, the area where you follow your hobby, the place where your family lives or where you originally come from.
2. Do a trail
On the same note, if you want to walk, walk one of the many national trails. Head over to https://www.sustrans.org.uk/ncn/map and see which trails and routes run through your area and map out a walk or a trip with your bike.
3. Go somewhere local you have never been before
Use National Get Outside Day to find a local gem that you haven’t explored before. Uncover places in your area you never went to.
4. Cowboy camp / star gazing
It is admittedly getting a little cold for proper cowboy camping, but if the weather permits spending a night under the stars – and only the stars – is a beautiful way to get outside. Even if you have to crawl into your warm tent or car after a little while and you don’t actually sleep under the stars.
5. Combine two activities
Outdoor activities are plentiful. In case you find yourself having a hard time deciding what to do for your adventure – what if you don’t have to decide, but instead get to combine what you like? Combining two activities you haven’t done together before is a great way to spice up your adventure. You could fly a kite on top of a mountain you climbed, you could have a yoga or workout session at the halfway point of your walk, you could play badminton on a cliff, create art like a sand mandala or an arrangement of natural materials you found in the middle of a trail run or practice balance exercises on a boat or surfboard – there are a million different and fun combinations to experiment with!
6. Have a social in the great outdoors
Multiply the numbers of participants by bringing your family and friends outside, too. Get together with your people on a picknick, a barbeque, a volleyball match or some rounds of frisbee. Or just sit by the river and have some snacks and drinks with your loved ones. Bring something to sit on and a blanket to wrap around you and your social outdoors can last just as long as your socials in the pub.
7. Organise a dog meetup
Don’t walk your dog alone, walk together! Get the local dog owners and your pup’s pals together and go somewhere scenic to let the doggos go wild. The humans have a walk and a chat in the great outdoors whilst the fur-faces get the zoomies.
8. Do a 24-hour challenge
Get ambitious and challenge yourself to get as many kilometres or different activities or scenic spots done as you possibly can in 24 hours. Challenge your friends and family, your followers or your sports team to join in as well.
9. Sit in a bird hide
If you google bird hides in your area you’ll find lists upon lists with locations of bird and/or wildlife hides to sit in. Some are just little huts with windows and benches, dotted over different trails and areas, open to everybody who walks past. Others are more sophisticated structures with different facilities that can be privately rented for wildlife observation or a workshop in wildlife photography. Given the season you could possibly even find somewhere to get involved with building winter shelters for either wildlife in nature or your community animals in urban regions.
10. Mix it up
Keep it fresh by shaking things up! Are you a keen walker – go on a bike trip. Are you a cyclist – use a paddle boat. Are you a watersports person – climb a mountain. Are you a camper – rent a tree house. Are you a tent person – borrow a hammock. You get the idea. Get outside, literally, but also by leaving your comfort zone.
There are so many ways to spend time in nature. Be it alone or together, challenging or relaxing. Whatever your preference is, the main thing is that you get out and do it. Don’t forget to take pictures of your outdoor adventures and of yourself with your thumbs up and tag them with the official hashtags #GetOutsideDay and #BeActive . Tag @ordnancesurvey so that they can see your pictures and @jennifer_hikes so that we can see them too!