I love this idea from Brendan at the ever-inspiring Semi-Rad blog. It’s also a nice boost up from my Year of Microadventure Challenge so I’m really happy to encourage people to get involved with Brendan’s plan:
I don’t do well with training goals or competing in races. But getting myself to places where I can lie down under the stars? That’s just a time- and location-management issue.
Climbing hard, setting a personal best time, riding the best trails possible in the all-too-brief time we have away from work: those are all noble things. But the end goal for me in all of that is getting outside more—and the easiest way to feel like I’ve been outside as much as possible is to keep track of my nights sleeping under the stars. It’s the one thing I can do to slow myself down in a life that feels like it’s all about speeding up. And if I do it often enough, maybe I feel like I can get a little close to the ever-elusive “balance” we always talk about—which I can’t even come close to on a daily basis, but over the span of a year I definitely can, if I spend 31 of my nights not looking at a glowing screen right up until the last minute I finally decide to go to bed.
A month of nights outside is 1/12th of the year, and sounds like a big number at first. But if you consider that in the next four months of summer we have 16 weekends, including two 3-day weekends, that’s 34 days you don’t have to work, if you have a regular Monday-through-Friday 9-to-5 job. 31 nights can be within reach.
Of course, with a full-time job and all the other stuff we do, finding the time can be a challenge. Sometimes then I sneak away after work and do nothing more than just cook dinner on a backpacking stove and sleep somewhere away from the city before heading home in the morning. I have rallied friends into “School Night Bike Camping” more than once, where a half-dozen of us meet in a park in the center of the city on a Thursday night and ride bicycles loaded with firewood, beer, food, and tents to the nearest campground, 12 miles from downtown Denver. We all get up at 6 the next morning smelling like campfire and pedal an hour back into work, just over 12 hours after we started. It’s quick, but hey, you take what you can get. People are busy nowadays.
If you’d like to find out more or get involved, read the full piece here.