Part Three: High on Exercise
and the Great Outdoors
We have come to the third and final installation of this little series. The goal has been to generate ideas for fun things to do on weekends that don’t revolve around alcohol. The other two blogs were focused on sober night-life type activities, parties and going out without “going back out.” This one has a different focus—exercise and outdoorsy things.
What better way to burn off steam from the long work week than to get your natural endorphins flowing from some exercise. A little fresh air never did anyone wrong, either. We often forget how beautiful and awe-inspiring that nature can be. So, here are seven sober, exercise-related or outdoorsy activities to do on the weekends.
1. Group Bike Ride
Take to the open road on two wheels! Many cities have community groups and organizations that plan group bicycle rides. Biking is a fairly low risk kind of exercise, easy on the joints and a decent cardio. You can see your city from a new point of view while burning some calories.
Also, group rides bring people together, so you might make a couple new friends.
2. Join a League
I advise kickball, but there are plenty of other games to play. Get a group of friends to form a team, pick a name, and sign up for weekly games. It’s a great way to stay in shape, be outside, and have some fun with friends.
Being on a team always creates camaraderie. Even if your team sucks, cheering everyone on and getting pumped up for games can be a ton of fun.
3. Go Camping
This takes some planning to do in a group, and some amount of gear. Still, with a little forethought it’s easy fun. You can explore the nature around your site; follow a trailhead or swim in a nearby river.
Get back to the basics and have some fun around a campfire, see the starts for once, and get away from technology for a while. Camping is great way to spend quality time with friends out in the wilderness.
4. Hiking Adventures
Need a change of scenery? Take a hike. Most cities have at least a few nearby trailheads to tackle. Hiking can be really involved and intense or short and sweet. You could drive down the road and do an hour long trail, or you could do a multi-day trek like Havasupai Falls in the Grand Canyon.
Whatever you choose, it’s an easy way to get the blood pumping and see some gorgeous views.
5. Snow Funtimes
If it’s wintertime, there are a ton of snow sports to participate in. Skiing and snowboarding are a great time, and a lot of lodges offer good deals for group trips. Ski lifts and gear rental can get pricey, though.
So if you’re strapped for cash, you can always buy a cheap toboggan. Climb some hills and go sledding; it’s fun no matter how old you get. Cross country skiing is great, too, and you can skip the lodge fees.
6. Water Fintimes
If it’s summertime, then water sports are a good option. Depending on where you are geographically, there are a lot of options: water ski, surfing, wake boarding, paddle board, and more.
If you don’t feel like being quite so active, simply visiting a waterfront can be lovely. Just pack a picnic lunch and some frisbees and go to the beach/lake/river with some friends.
7. Plant Hunt
Get in touch with your ancient hunter gatherer genes and your hippie spirit to go plant hunting. All you need is a botany book that identifies plants with pictures and descriptions. Find out what kind of edible plants are in your corner of the planet and go hunting!
Go hunting for wild herbs, mushrooms (no, not the magical kind) and berries—and identify the local trees, shrubs, and flowers along the way.
Find Joy in Sobriety
Our time on this beautiful planet is limited. While alive and well, seize your life and go see the world! In active addiction, life is a haze—filled with obsession, pain, loneliness, and sickness. Now that you are sober, you can open your eyes and really see the grace that is all around you.
So, go out and breathe the fresh air and climb mountains and enjoy the views and smell the flowers and move your blessed body and enjoy what it feels like to have health! Love your life, you have earned it.