Set yourself an outdoor goal for 2017

Looking for a New Years Resolution? Challenge yourself!

As the New Year approaches and we’re all guilty of making those loose new year’s resolutions that have often fallen by the wayside by the end of January, why not set yourself a challenge in 2017? We’ve pulled together a list of ideas for your outdoors resolution. Set a target and smash it this year!

The main problem that most of us have with a new year’s resolution, is that we set ourselves far reaching targets. If you’re a chocolate addict, it’s unlikely that you’re going to give up chocolate all together straight away, if you’re trying to tell less ‘dad jokes’ then that’s just not fair, the world needs a groan and if you’re planning to sign up for a year’s membership to the gym, only to realise you hate modern dance music and gurning men by the second week in January? Then you’re wasting your money.

Set yourself a small, achievable target, smash it, and set yourself another. Your new year’s resolution should be something that keeps evolving throughout 2017. A series of mini-wins that keep you interested. Only you can decide where you’re at physically and mentally, if you’ve never ran before, you likely won’t want to challenge yourself to a marathon early in the year. We’ve pulled together a few suggestions below that you can work into your own goals:
1. Find a new hobby
Getting started is half of the challenge for most adults. As we get older, we’re a little daunted by starting a new class, and truly being a beginner in a new sport or hobby. It’s worth finding a new hobby purely because everything you do will be a personal best. You’re starting from the bottom and working your way up. The feel good factor will keep you coming back for more, and the challenge will spur you on. Take up running, join a walking club, head down to your local climbing centre or outdoor adventure centre and see what is on offer. Not only are you having fun and challenging yourself, there is potential for new friends and even the ‘weight loss’ that most people reach for in a resolution.

2. Beat your personal best
Only you can decide what this entails. If you’ve never run before, maybe challenge yourself to complete a 5k in the first quarter of the year, build from there. What are you looking for? speed? distance? maybe you’re looking for height want to conquer a mountain? If you don’t have a personal best, there are plenty of apps available for your smartphone to start recording your activity. Once you know what you’re capable of, you’ve got a target to beat.

3. Stress Relief
Stress is another big factor of new year’s resolutions. If you find that you get stressed quite easily, the outdoors can help you out. There has been plenty of research over the last few years that shows, simply taking the time to go outdoors for a period of time during the day can be a great stress reliever. So if you’re cooped up in an office all day, head outside for lunch, or go for a walk and come back ready to tackle the afternoon.

4. Give yourself a break, regardless
We’re in a time of financial uncertainty, and many researchers are predicting a price rise on overseas travel during 2017. If you find yourself in a position to go abroad, it’s not the end of the world, as there is plenty to offer right here in the UK. Unwind with a camping trip, head out glamping in a yurt, or an adventure holiday. There really is so much on offer around the UK to give you that break from the day-to-day that we all look for.

5. Discover somewhere new
With 15 National Parks around the UK, there is plenty of green space to visit, that coupled with the wealth of history, outdoor pursuits, and miles upon miles of coastline, there’s always something new to discover around the UK. Why not go out and explore, keep a record of all the new places you visit and look back on it at the end of the year.

6. Learn a new skill
If you’re not looking for a sporting hobby, why not pick up a new skill in 2017? Learn to use a map & compass, take a bushcraft class, or improve on your photography. Most of your National Parks or indeed local areas will offer outdoor skills classes.

7. Join in
Beating personal bests can be a great way to improve your goals, but why not really challenge yourself in 2017 and join in with a group? Running groups, races, endurance races, walking clubs, cycle sportives are great ways to meet like minded people and either test yourself out against others, or just have fun alongside.


Whatever you do in 2017, do something. There’s no better feeling than setting goals and smashing targets. The more you achieve, the more goals you’ll set for yourself, and who knows where that will have taken you by the end of the new year?

What is your outdoors resolution? Your challenge to yourself? Let us know in the comments below.