Sunday, 1 January 2012
One disadvantage of having lots of free time is that you have a lot of free time. That means you always have the option of delaying, putting off, prevaricating. So, despite vague plans for rides, it takes little excuse to just put it off to another day. Weather is, of course, top of the list. If it looks a bit damp, or too windy it's all too easy to just put the kettle on, kick the feet up and have a look at what's happening on the world via the wonders of the internet.
As a way of combating this, I entered a series of monthly "challenges" with some friends using the Endomondo sports tracking website. We started off by simply recording total calories burnt, figuring that anything involving distance immediately disadvantaged the walkers, runners and swimmers. As 2011 progressed, I started on my own challenge - to burn an average of 1,000 calories per day in some form of exercise. Due to a couple of longer trips, including my Lands End - John o'Groats ride, I easily got ahead of the target and I actually reached 365,000 calories at the end of October. In order to keep the incentive alive, I then decided to aim for a total of 10,000 kilometres for the year and with just a couple of days to go, I surpassed that target, ending up with 10,042km.
It really has worked for me. Days where it would be easy to sit in and look at the weather, I've taken to getting out there anyway. Trips where I thought I was a bit tired and might have taken a shortcut home, I've ground it out to get that extra burn/distance in.
However, for 2012, I've decided to drop all that number-crunching stuff. My goal this year is to get out into the hills more, on bike and on foot, wild camping where I can. I also aim to get more use out of the kayak and will likely sign up for some sort of skills course for my own and my wifes piece of mind.
We'll see how this works out. I've promised myself I'd do this for the last 2/3 years but life (or, more accurately, death) kept getting in the way.
Well, that's me sorted - how about you? Whatever it is you aim for, let's make 2012 a real year to remember!