My 2020 Christmas Day

Purposeful Adventure

With restrictions, evolving and confusing guidance, new laws, social pressure and a host of other variables that float in the subconscious, a construct of our current society, much of this our own interpretations and standards we set ourselves. We have all felt the strain of late, promises and hopes continually dashed, frustrations born from our perceptions of what others should be doing and what we are unable to.

Adventure for many has been hard to come by, limited to the areas we dwell in, I for one in the shadows of Milton Keynes feel the calling of the mountains, untamed landscapes, yet these appear out of reach and unattainable at present. I know many of you are experiencing similar in one way or capacity.

This is where Purposeful Adventure has aided creating something more from what is on our doorsteps. One of Trash Free Trails mindsets, it’s creating purpose to that run, ride or ramble, beyond simply left foot, right foot, left foot, check pace and repeat. Whether it’s exploring new areas, looking for trash, cleaning a trail, speaking to others on the trail – in essence, seeing that same trail with new eyes. In effect, taking a degree of ownership and responsibility, using your time in wild spaces for more than simply an escape or fun.

Reconnecting with our wild spaces, breaking our reliance on strava segments, leaderboards and statistical breakdowns

Christmas Day

I’ve spent the majority of the last 10 years on my own at this time of the year and 2020 was no different. However, with social contact at an all time low, it felt like I needed to shake up my usual long run or ride. I wanted to give something back, as I wouldn’t be able to physically give to anyone else.

90 minutes of riding and clearing resulted in a wide selection of litter collected from 1-5 meters inside the woods opposite my local bike park. With the majority coming from plastic and glass bottles, beer cans and food wrappers. Often half used, and thrown into the undergrowth. Given the majority of users are drivers, using the area to park for a ride, it’s a frustrating situation. However, things could be worse and trash breeds trash. It fulfilled my day, gave me a sense of purpose, got me out on the bike and into nature.

Theres a lot to be said to heading out the front door with a purpose other than to hit a training goal or challenge yourself mentally.

The results – 95 pieces of trash

With the pack full and a bag in hand, I rode home to record the contents and log it with Trash Free Trails database, their State Of Our Trails Report.

Purposeful Adventure doesn’t have to mean bags of litter, nor does it have to be big mountains and epic stories for the gram or YouTube. It doesn’t have to be about big actions or maximising the day, but getting out in wild spaces we love and doing so with purpose. Not every adventure need be purposeful, nor every outing requires some far reaching result.

But every now and then, throw one in, find what resonates with you

Create your own narrative

Live your own Purposeful Adventures