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Active Travel: Keeping your new year's resolutions on track

Posted by Michael Thorburn on 30th January 2017

New year’s resolutions are a traditional part of welcoming in a fresh calendar year. They offer people the chance to change aspects of themselves, try something new, or even give something up. For most folk, myself included, these resolutions tend to centre around health and wellbeing with many using the new year as a chance to get fitter and healthier. However, it’s not always as easy as we would like it to be, and good intentions sometimes feel like they are not quite enough. As Robert Burns once wrote: “The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft agly”.

We know those cold, dark mornings are still lingering on. It’s easy to view your resolutions as a distant memory and find the temptation of old habits looming large. However, it’s not all doom and gloom, spring is…about to be sprung… the days are lengthening and the better weather and longer days are just around the corner (honest).

Here at Greener Scotland we are determined to keep you motivated towards living a healthier lifestyle. With that in mind we thought a little bit of inspiration might be just what you (and I) need to keep working towards your goals.

Did you know that the everyday decisions you make on travelling can have a real impact on making Scotland a cleaner, greener place to live. So if you’re looking for a little bit of extra encouragement to fire you up and keep you going, we have just the thing. What better motivation could you ask for than the knowledge that you can not only ensure a healthier you, but also a healthier Scotland too.

No matter if it is choosing to walk or cycle, to work or the shops, these choices can make a real difference, both for your wellbeing and the country’s. Almost half the journeys we make are of less than two miles, and exercise such as walking is one of the best ways to clear your head and reduce stress. Whether you use the time to gather your thoughts and plan your day, or just work off some stresses, the benefits of active travel are numerous.

What’s more, with a huge assortment of activity trackers and smartphone apps, you can keep track of how you’re doing in real time and even compete with friends and family. Of course, you don’t need the fancy apps and watches to engage in a little friendly competition. You can still challenge your friends and family without the technology. If you prefer, you can even challenge yourself by trying to beat your record each day/week. Every step you take really is also a step towards a greener, healthier Scotland.

As if we hadn’t already given you enough reasons to embrace active travel, you can also save yourself some cash too. By opting to leave the car at home for shorter journeys and choosing a more active alternative you will notice that the pounds are filling up in your wallet as they are dropping off your body. The mantra here at Greener Scotland is: If it’s not far, leave the car.

The Greener Scotland site has a great page on the benefits of active travel, as well as some great advice and information to help you learn more about active travel. So, the next time you find yourself stretching for the car keys, why don’t you stretch your legs instead. And don’t forget that not only are you helping make Scotland a better place to live, you are also helping make yourself fitter, healthier, and even wealthier!