Leave your bench behind !!


Our weekend choices are many and varied in this entertainment age but nothing makes me happier than a run in the countryside. We all have our “bench” whether its¬†the couch, tv, family, work or just life in general but the minute I lace up my trainers everything else simply fades away and those mindful moments kick in.

I’d only planned a short run today due to some health issues but trail running really is the best¬†medicine available. The plan was quite simply three miles out and three back while absorbing whatever my senses could take on board


Setting off along the Meon Valley trail I’d heard a woodpecker within five minutes and watched a squirrel jump from branch to branch above my head.

The occasional clumps of snowdrops were signs that Spring isn’t too far away and the sound of water trickling off the fields and into the drainage channels¬†was a welcome change to the constant sound of rain that January seemed to offer.

The conversational tweeting of the birds sounded like they were discussing where yesterdays sunshine had gone and an occasional black crow made its distinctive calling sound just to let me know it was watching me.

Talking of animals this fallen tree looked strangely like an octopus or maybe a squid with its tenticales stretched out in front of it ……¬†or maybe that’s just my imagination ?



I said hello to various runners, walkers, cyclists and stopped to walk while the horse riders passed me by. We were all enjoying this pleasant February morning countryside experience.

Patches of mud made for some¬†decision making as to the best line¬†of approach¬†but these were fairly limited. Due¬†to the nature of the trail¬†previously being a train line your tree¬†lined views extend quite a few hundred metres ahead of you. This tree lined corridor¬†isn’t as noticeable without¬†Spring and Summers leaves, however, that said it means you can see through the trees to¬†what lies beyond.

The uniform vertical trees were strangely interrupted by this curious sprawling version. It¬†clearly hadn’t¬†read the “how to grow up” manual !!


With so much countryside and nature to explore¬†I can’t recommend it enough. Choose your area, possibly reward yourself with a visit to a caf√© afterwards but go explore !! Get out there with friends or maybe take the family¬†?


“Stumped” what to do¬†at the weekend, leave your bench¬†behind¬†and experience the great¬†outdoors ūüôā