Sunday, January 8, 2012

Step 2: Go outside

This week I will be taking it outside by spending at least 20 minutes outdoors three times. In my mind I hear about half of you gasping "Outside? Now? But it's January!!!" and the other half saying "my goodness, what kind of a couch potato are you? You need to make an effort to spend 20 minutes outside?!?"

And the answer is... well, sometimes I do. Truth be told, I am pretty good about getting outside, especially with Espen who loves getting out of doors. But when it's cold outside I don't want to get us both bundled up, and so we stay in, and so I get lazy and so I forget how much I actually enjoy being outside. Yes, forgetting that I enjoy things that require effort is a common theme in my life, have you noticed?

Anyway, it seems that being outside is pretty great for your health. Personally, I always find it helps to clear my mind and brighten my mood whenever I spend time outside. Harvard Health mentions a few in this article: increased vitamin D levels, more exercise, feeling happier, improved concentration and you may even heal faster!

Another personal reason for getting outside is that I want to teach Espen the value and fun in being active and outdoorsy. I don't think it will necessarily be as natural for his generation to find their fun outside, so I want to try to instill that in him from an early age.

Plus he looks cuter in natural light (Joking! He is adorable in all lights):

For myself, I like the idea that being outside sort of inherently makes you be more active. I find it unlikely that I'll go and sit on my front door step with a timer set for 20 minutes, and know that I will move around more than if I stayed inside. Of course, I have a toddler, which means I will be spending most of my time pulling him out of precarious situations. Fun for him, a little exercise for me. Win-win! 

I imagine we will take a walk around the duck ponds, and spend some time at the playground. Nothing big or ambitious, but plenty of opportunity to breathe some fresh air and soak up some of that vitamin D. 

Are you in? If you're already an outdoorsy person, why not step it up a bit and go outside more than you typically do, or stay out a bit longer once you're there. If you never spend time outside and find this daunting, then maybe just aim for one trip outside this week. Small steps! 

Who's with me?

PS, I also wanted to point out that Resources for the Future has a good article here, if you're feeling the tiniest bit academic today. 


  1. As we are dogowners and already spending a lot of time out in the cold and rain/snow and wind :) this weeks challenge will be quite easy to fulfill. It is good for you though and ones you get out there it really isen't too bad. Just remember to dress according to the weather. Being cold ruins all the fun :) and a cup of hot chocolate tastes delicious when you get back inside.

  2. As long as the sun is out I feel good. And not below 45 degrees, and no wind, and no rain.....can you tell I can't wait for spring?
    Blessings, Joanne

  3. such a cuite :)

    I love being outdoors, but find myself not being out too much in the cold. I need to get better about that!

  4. There is something so refreshing, revitalizing, to me about being outside. Even if it's cold! We usually don't stay out too long, but you bet we get outside everyday. I need fresh air. Great goal!

  5. I am inn, let`s go outside..

    I am enjoying theese steps so don`t you dare stop lol..

    psst i am leaving my waterbottle inside..

  6. Oh, my goodness! Your son is absolutely adorable! I think its great to instill a love of the outdoors in children at a young age! Hopefully having him as part of your motivation will make this goal more easily attainable!