Be Brave, Be Curious!

 In Adventure

I started my adventures young, just like anyone else. Trips to beach, walking the fields behind our house to hunt mythical badgers, sitting by the river watching trout leaping for flies on the surface. Small adventures, but every dream has a starting point!

If you’re lucky enough to grow up in an adventurous family, or have a friend that shows you at a young age that there’s more life than cartoons, you’ll no doubt grow up with a lust for adventure. Growing-up on the picturesque west coast of Ireland I was fortunate enough to get a taste of the great outdoors at a young age and from there my love of the outdoors thrived! In my late teens, my love for all things brave and bold drew me to take a position in the military where I learned how to navigate the rolling hills, camp in the wild, how to catch my own dinner and endless other skills that would prove very useful as I tackled more daring adventures.

I’ve always had a competitive edge. Now, that’s not to say I’ve ever been on a winning podium but I certainly like to have a go at getting up there! My competitive streak and love for all things adventurous came together in spectacular fashion when I took on my first big multi-sport challenge, Gaelforce West. A brutal 70km multi-sport challenge located on the rugged mountains of the west of Ireland. Suffering my way through this brutal challenge, I learned allot about myself like how to deal with pain, how to deal with self doubt and most importantly I learned that if you keep going, no matter how slow you are moving you will eventually cross that finish line! These lessons have proved more valuable in life than anything I’ve ever learned from a chalkboard!

As I moved through my early twenties, as most people do, I followed the pre-defined path; finish school, go to University, graduate, get a job, save money and so on…. And before I knew it I had started to become too tired for running, too exhausted to climb mountains, too focused on work to plan adventures. I had encountered my greatest challenge yet! How does someone who works a “9to5”, answer their adventurous call from within?

That was the point I discovered micro-adventures! An adventure doesn’t have to be climbing the highest mountain in the country or running from one coast to another! Sometimes its just as exciting to camp in the wild for 2 nights and learn to start fire without matches or take that day hike near that lake you pass on your way home from work.

Since my first multisport challenge I’ve taken on countless races and self challenges across the British Isles covering some of the most remote parts of the country. This year, 2017, will see me take on even more challenges and with limited daylight after work, I have been using micro-adventures to maximise my training and to keep my skills sharp.

Micro-adventures has countless benefits! If you’ve got a big adventure coming up, a micro-adventure can be the perfect chance to try out new skills, new equipment or even just freshen up on old skills like map reading before you head out for your bigger challenges.

If you’re like me and struggle to find the time to plan out your adventures, then you’ll be glad to know micro-adventures take allot less planning and can even invite for spontaneous trips!

I’ve used micro-adventures as opportunities to introduce some of my friends to the outdoors, some of whom would easily have been put off by bigger challenges. Micro-adventures can be allot less intimidating for those new to the outdoors and more often than not allot more affordable.

But one of the biggest benefits I have personally found from micro-adventures is that they require much less energy. It’s often the case that I finish work on a Friday evening utterly exhausted from the week and kicking myself for not making it to the gym. if you are still working on getting your fitness back on track but still want to enjoy the weekend, then micro-adventures are the perfect way to mix some training with an affordable, enjoyable day out!

It’s important to remember that the old cliché stands true, we are all on a path. If you don’t like your path, make change, adapt and overcome your boundaries. Life has infinite choices and without change you will stay on the same path.

Countryfi have an amazing range of adventures, micro-adventures and activities from as little as £5 all across the UK and make it simple to book directly through their website. Countryfi’s micro-adventures are ideal for introducing your friends or family to the outdoors or even more challenging adventures for the more daring among you, so I urge you, Be Brave…Be curious!

Yours in adventure,
James McEnroe


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