It’s a week into 2020, and by now most of us have already failed on our new years resolutions. Maybe work got in the way of that new exercise, or perhaps you lost your temper and raised your voice at your kids. Maybe you failed to get up at your new, earlier wake-up time, or cheated on your new diet at the office New Years party.
Whatever it was, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered. We’ve got the easiest new years resolution to give you a second chance at self-improvement, and it’s one that you won’t have to work too hard to accomplish.
While this might sound like a pretty trivial resolution, it’s actually a rather important one. While it’s easy to maintain your froth when you are young (we all used to put in eight-hour sessions when we were teenagers), as we get older we tend to let life get in the way of our time in the ocean.
Surfing doesn’t seem as important when our lives get filled up with relationships and responsibilities and stressors like debt and bills. But these stressors are the reason why surfing more is actually one of the most important things you can do this year. Here are four reasons why you need to spend more time on your surfboard in 2020.
It keeps you fit
This one is pretty obvious. As we get older, our metabolisms tend to slow down, and our activity level often decreases as well. Whereas it used to be easy to stay fit, now we struggle to keep the pounds off. But surfing is the perfect antidote to dad bod, because while it involves a ton of physical activity, it doesn’t really feel like exercise. Instead, we are so focused on catching and riding waves that we easily forget that we are also working out. Instead of resolving to exercise more this year, simply make a commitment to surfing more. The paddling will take care of the rest.
Spain and Portugal forecast, HERE
It’s good for your mental health
Adulting can be hard, and the stress that comes with it not only causes us to age faster, but also puts us at risk for health issues like heart disease and mental health issues. But surfing gives us a respite from the stress of daily life, allowing us to detach from work and responsibilities and the Internet, and work off that post-office angst with some water therapy.
It keeps you connected to nature
Even if you live and work in a city, simply being immersed in the ocean is a primal experience that brings numerous health benefits and helps us tap into our pre-industrial, nature-based heritage. Just as importantly, the more time we spend in nature, the more we appreciate it and become aware of the threats the environment face. One only has to look as far as the fires raging in Australia to see that the climate is changing and needs our protection. By spending time in nature, we are more likely to appreciate and want to protect it—and that means a better world for everyone.
Spot guide: Sumatra and the Mentawais
It’s a social outlet
Sure, the crowds in the lineup get to be a bit much from time to time, but most of the time one of the best things about surfing is the social interaction we have as we share waves with friends. When we are young and in school, we are naturally surrounded by an almost endless supply of potential friends. But once we settle into an adult routine of work and family, our social circle tends to become pretty limited. Hobbies such as surfing expose us to new people who share the same interests as us, making them the perfect opportunity to find new friends.
It helps you remember to play
What is it about growing up that makes most of us put away our toys and stop playing? Non-self-conscious, non-goal-oriented, unstructured play keeps kids young and innocent, and helps them learn quickly and efficiently. Plus, it’s downright fun.
Look at a group of kids playing and then look at a group of adults not playing, and the most striking difference between the two will be the smiles on the kids’ faces. Although we obviously have responsibilities that we have to tend to as adults, if we stop playing altogether, then what exactly is the point of all the hard work. Surfing is the play that can keep adults young and stoked, even as the years pass us by. Resolve to surf more this year, and your entire life will benefit!
Cover shot, US east coast boom by Timmy Torchia