Rory Linehan is the blogger behind the Paleo PI. Rory developed acute Mononucleosis in his late teens and slowly watched his health unravel over the following years. He developed rosacea, ocular rosacea, lethargy, brain fog, bloating and eventually depression. He spent years troubleshooting his health to no avail until finding the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol (AIP). The AIP gave Rory his life back, restoring his mood and energy as well as giving him a new lease on life for which he is eternally grateful. Rory troubleshoots the final pieces of his health jigsaw at the Paleo PI. The site helps others reclaim their health by providing people the tools to troubleshoot their health through his unique three pronged approach: Nutrition, Lifestyle and Mindset. You can connect with Rory at The Paleo PI website through his Facebook page or on Twitter.
- Over half of the world’s population lives in urban areas, meaning for most of us, time in nature is no longer our status-quo, it has to be planned!
- My time in nature was cut in half after my move from Australia to Washington DC
- Necessity is the mother of invention…. I developed the following 5 strategies to vastly improve the amount of time I spend in the great outdoors.
In Part 1 of this series, I explore how time in nature supercharges our health. From blood glucose regulation, to immune and hormone balancing, the effects of nature on the human body are profound.
From an evolutionary standpoint this makes sense. Our earliest human ancestors started walking this earth 2,500,000 years ago. For 99% of our existence we were hunter-gatherers and nature was our natural habitat. The dawn the industrial revolution saw humans remove themselves from nature to an extent never seen before. Today, over half of the world lives in urban areas with that proportion set to increase to 66 per cent by 2050.
For most of us, time in nature is now has to be planned as opposed to our status quo. But with our busy lives, with work, cooking, cleaning and our families it can be hard to find time to sit down, let alone get out in nature!
This is something I have personally struggled with since recently moving from Australia to Washington DC. My hometown in Australia is full of natural beauty, with tree-lined streets, mountains and is surrounded by forest. Getting out in nature was as easy as leaving the house. Unfortunately, moving to Washington saw me unintentionally cut my time in nature in half. The closest park to my house is a 20-minute walk and I need to drive to get the nearest hiking trail. I’ve always loved time in nature and thrived on it but with a demanding job I just couldn’t find the time…
They say necessity is the mother of invention. My need to spend time in nature, despite my time constraints, helped me to develop these 5 fail-proof strategies which have greatly increased the time I spend in the great outdoors.
Put in Your Diary
You use your calendar to schedule meetings, doctors’ appointments and soccer practice, so why not schedule time to get out in nature? I’ve set-aside time, one Saturday per month, to go out hiking in the forest. I’ve placed the time in my iPhone calendar and set it as a recurring appointment. BOOM, it’s that simple!
A little is better than none
I can hear you from here. You are really stretched for time aren’t able to dedicate a day to getting out in nature. No sweat! Start by chunking it up. Instead of a whole day, schedule 20 – 30 minutes to get out in your local park. Increase it by 5 minutes each time and before you know it, you’ll be in nature for an hour. Take the kids, make it a family activity and kill two birds with one stone. Talk about maximizing your time!
Bring Nature to You
So you can’t get out in nature? No sweat! Bring nature to you. Plant a garden in your backyard. Grow some herbs, fruits or vegetables and get your hands dirty in the soil, your gut bacteria will thank you for it. Or do like me, and get a house plant. But please do better than me in keeping it alive!
Get an Accountability Partner
Are you the type of person who needs to be kept accountable? I sure am. Each week in our team meeting I tell them team everything on my to do list to keep myself accountable (my poor colleagues!). Extrapolate the concept to time in nature. Tell your friends and family that you’ll be spending time in nature or better yet, invite them with you!
Exercise in Nature
Are you an avid runner? Do you like to cycle? Maybe you like walking? We all know the benefits of exercising but why not take it from the gym to nature? Some of my best runs have been in the mountains of my home town. My favourite type of cycling? Mountain bike riding! And as cliché as it sounds, I love long walks on the beach (I know you do too!). With summer en route in the northern hemisphere, it’s a great excuse to make the most of the warmer weather.
I hope these tips have been useful for you! Let me know if they worked for you as well as they have for me. Stay awesome folks!