What better way to spend a wet and windy Summer afternoon at Monk Bouldering Centre in Rotterdam. Read my unbiased thoughts and recommendations on this outdoors and adventure climbing paradise.Read More
Why you should go for walks after work is a motivational piece of writing that encourages everyone to get out after work and go for a walk. It doesn’t really matter where you walk, or indeed for how far, by utilising what you have all around you and embracing the fresh will definitely bring untold benefits to your overall health and well-being. Read on to find out more.Read More
Here is a list of some of my 5 favourite outdoor clothing brands to help you get started and kitted out for the Great Outdoors. I start with The North Face, probably the best known outdoor clothing brand out there, then move on to the likes of Fjallraven, Haglofs, Montane and Rab Equipment. Where I hope to give my honest opinion of what these popular brands might offer.Read More
50 Bucket list ideas to do in the Great Outdoors is a comprehensive list of fun activities that any child or adult can enjoy in their own free time. I hope these 50 ideas help to serve as inspiration and motivation and indeed help others get outside, enjoy the natural world around them, without spending large amounts of money on unnecessary extras.Read More
Cycling tips for staying safe on the road.
Nowadays, it seems like more bicycles are out on the roads rather than simply ageing or gathering dust in the garage or shed. This increase probably has something to do with increased awareness over the worries of climate change, or it is simply due to the fact we all seem on a fitness drive (of sorts) and are continually looking to keep in shape and lead a more healthy and positive lifestyle.
WOW Park: A great day out for all would be adventurers.
I recently had the chance to spend the day adventuring in the Danish Woodlands, at an amazing outdoor adventure playground. It was an exhilarating experience, climbing and swinging in the tree tops. Rediscovering your childhood, as nature intended.
Read what I thought of this pretty impressive place, in my latest Blog Post.
‘Thoughts and Stories from the Great Outdoors’Read More
'Do more of what makes you happy’ is a frequently used saying. It is also a saying that is often misused or perhaps overlooked. Feeling happy or finding happiness in life is something we all seek. How we get there or how long it takes, is always a question the individual has to answer themselves.
A practical view on how we can utilise what is all around us in order to bring some extra positive thinking and overall happiness into our lives.
‘Thoughts and Stories from the Great Outdoors’
How to Reproof an Outdoor Jacket with Nikwax Waterproofing.
It is time to test out some Nikwax waterproofing products, which were kindly given to my by Nikwax. Nikwax are the world Leaders in waterproofing. You can read all about my detailed product review and how I reproofed an old outdoor jacket. Breathing new life into it and saving money on buying a new one.
Time for a Digital Detox
I remember the days when Social Media and electronic devices didn’t exist. I remember the days when I (personally) would spend hours of my day, care free and out in the fresh air.
This new blog post highlights another reason why it is important to ‘get back to nature’and give your body and mind a Digital Detox.Read More
Getting back to Nature
Feeding our natural instincts by getting back to nature is vitally important if we are to fulfil and attempt to live a more healthy lifestyle.
I this particular blog post I aim to share some thoughts and ideas on how we can all make a positive change and begin spending just 30 minutes a day in the outdoors.
Top Tips from a Cycle Commuter.
Over the last few years, there’s definitely been somewhat of a revolution in the number of people choosing to cycle to work. Maybe it's down to increased traffic on the roads, personal issues relating to health, cost or simply trying something new. Either way, there are many great benefits of riding into work, rather than driving or using public transport.
In this particular post, I hope to highlight some of my Top Tips, after I decided to ditch all modes of transport, in order to complete a 32 mile/52km cycle commute each and every day.Read More
It's time to make the most of the longer days and warmer weather...
With long, dark, cold winter months finally leaving us behind, a new world of opportunity is blossoming just beyond your window. As the seasons change, the weather is starting to improve and the days are getting longer.
To hopefully promote, positive thinking, I would like to encourage my readers to get outside, make the most of what you have, by enjoying some much-needed sunshine and perhaps begin to participate in one of the many healthy active pursuits at your disposal.
As the saying goes... 'hello body, healthy mind.'
This is the third and latest post in my series all about 'Inspiring Individuals.' In this particular post, I will be focusing on one of my good friends, from my University days. Through the years, we shared some great times. Playing in the same successful football team and enjoying some similar past times, as well as being part of a wider friendship group.
May I introduce Graham Clarke.Read More
Recognising and featuring Inspiring Individuals, who go out of there way in order to do something different and achieve their goals.
First up is Paul.Read More
Life in the Bike Lane
Since moving to the Netherlands around three years ago the majority of my days are spent outside, cycling in the bike lane. To most people out there, this might sound rather mad or perhaps even peculiar, but it is all in fact entirely true. After 'Brexiting' the Motherland and I guess becoming part of Dutch culture I decided to make some changes in my life. Changes that were perhaps easy to consider, but in reality, much harder to actually implement.Read More
Blog collaboration with world leaders in outdoor waterproofing Aquapac.
Cycling has always been my passion. Something I have continually embraced through leisure and sporting pursuits. Cycling is a huge part of me, part of my character and an essential aspect of my existence, here on planet earth. I cycle everywhere, here in the Netherlands, back in the UK and anywhere my travels take me.Read More
Thoughts from a Spontaneous Sunday Cycle.
As the new year rolls on, there is a always a distinct possibility of falling back into bad habits. Around Christmas and New Year many people (including myself) set themselves targets about what they would like to achieve during the year ahead and as soon as they have started, they end up giving up and reverting back to the norm.
I write this blog post on the particular day, commonly reffered to as 'Blue Monday'. When countries in the Northern Hemisphere often see it as the most depressing day of the year.
Of course, as I look out the window, yet again the morning sky is grey and the view set before me isn't the most inspiring, but among that gloomy scene, I have to be thankful that I've already biked to work this morning and hopefully will start the day in a positive frame of mind. As a result, I remain sceptical and really believe that the so called January Blues or infact Blue Monday, is really just a personal thing, with negativity simply feeding negativity and people using it as a vehicle to perhaps just wallow in a moment of self pity.
With those thoughts in mind, I have continued to develop a positive outlook and approach to the many things I do. As a result, I have again set some personal goals for this year and I'm delighted to say that I'm sticking to them. Whether that is through my photography, cycling or running.
If I firstly look back to last year. I decided after much deliberation to take the leap of faith and ditch motorised transport and opted to cycle to work instead. At first it seemed like one of my many crazy ideas, but completing a round trip of 16 miles each way, for 5 days a week was actually the best thing I have ever done. Especially, for both my body and mind.
Establishing, my new found freedom meant that eventually my total commute allowed me to complete a total of 5,546 miles for the whole year, achieving what I set out to do, as I initially focused on the target of completing 5,000 miles. So, by the end of 2016 I'd reached a significant milestone and of course felt good for doing so.
This year I feel determined to follow in the same vain, with significantly high levels of commitment and enthusiasm for the task. I want to maintain a positive approach and continue to achieve the most I can. Therefore cycling for purpose, commuting to work, making a difference to myself and of course keeping fit remains an important part of my life.
To maintain that positive frame of mind I want to share some of my possible tips or tricks in order to hopefully motivate others to achieve personal goals, that will allow you to adopt and adapt them to almost anything you decide to do.
Always have a purpose... a GOAL.
It really doesn't matter what you do, I have many hobbies, with so many options, but you have to have a purpose for doing what you do. That might mean establishing a goal to achieve something throughout your ventures, or perhaps a goal at the very end. Just remember that lack of motivation often comes from running out of ideas or reasons as to why you are completing your desired goal. In my opinion the biggest failing is not having a purpose, so make sure it is your primary goal and develop a greater understanding that the outcome might not make you perfect, but it will motivate you to do even more.
It's a marathon and not a sprint.
In the past I have learnt from my mistakes and I have certainly been prone to not pacing myself. Trying to achieve a lot, very quickly would certainly be the ideal, but in reality there is the possibility of burn out or lack of interest in what you are trying to achieve.
From my own mistakes, I have certainly learnt the hard way and understood a lot about myself , my skills and the things I need to improve over time. Therefore the word 'consistency' has become ever more present within my vocabulary.
Putting your desired goals into practice might not be so easy, but the rewards will be there to be seen. It could adopted into a variety of habits like pacing yourself during your runs, so that the training is often consistently slow and steady, cycling at a steady pace and avoiding injury or burn out, or consistently fueling your body with the correct types of foods.
3. Be realistic
Again one of my failings and many others is generally not being realistic. I have many hobbies and have a great deal of passion for a wide variety of things. In my eyes I want to be good at them all, whether that is my photography or perhaps my sporting pursuits, but in reality you do have to except (however hard) that you are not going to be good at everything.
True, I want to be a better cyclist, runner and photgrapher, but things don't just happen overnight and I believe it all come back to maintaining an appropriate and level of realism. Of course my dreams are big and it is important to have them, although the desired goal doesn't come without the knocks. They often say a person is shaped by how they cope with the knock-backs or disappointments in life. If you don't like disappointment then your threshold for coping will probably be low. If you come to terms with the negatives and earn to turn them into positives then you are probably moving in the right direction.
I'm personally motivated by people who make a difference and over the years I have met many wonderful people who focus on something and make a difference. Whether it is to their own lives or others, they put themself out there and make things happen. That is pretty admirable and something I look up to and set my realisic approach to something similar.
Throughtout January and the year ahead I will continue to keep cycling, I'm running more too and I will also endevour to try and make my photography that little bit more appealing, professional looking and seeking a slightly different viewpoint, in order to create new content.
I'm under no illusion that this will not be easy, but I always set my sights high. I also have the deisre and the perseverance to make things happen and will always feel better for doing so, in the hope of achieving something positive.
My blogs are also evolving and I want them to continue getting better throughout the year ahead. Again, I'm no expert, I just like writing and sharing my thoughts, travels, hope and dreams. As a result I don't want to sound like I know better than others, I don't, I'm just an aveage guy, who is still seeking the answers, as much as everyone else. Therefore I'm continually motivated and inspired by others and with that want to achieve and experience, as much as possible in the short time I have on this earth.
If you like this blog feel free to comment and share. It would be really fulfilling if you to could share your comments and thoughts with me, as a vehicle to hopefully inspire me and others to achieve great things in 2017.
Good luck with all that you do and remember with each and every little step, greater things can be achieved.
Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts. I really appreciate any time spent reading my musings.
All images are taken on my Smartphone.