I’m Making A Commitment…

…To me…

…And to adventure.

One of my favourite wastes of bandwidth is to marvel at other people’s amazing adventures, whether it’s Jamie McDonald running 5000 miles across Canada or Sophie Radcliffe and her incredible Alpine Coast to Coast last month. I love the tweets, blogs and videos of people doing epic shit and having amazing adventures. I always dream that one day I’ll do something like that…and then my belly and bank balance remind me that no, I won’t, and I go back to pretending to work whilst surreptitiously reading more blogs.

And then I discovered Al Humphreys and his concept of microadventure. I’ve already chronicled how wrong my first attempt at microadventure went, but the seed had been sown. It had made me say yes to someone inviting me out to be challenged. It made me set a date, make a plan and stick to it (to begin with anyway!) Of course microadventure is pretty easy and cheap, that’s the whole point of it, it was still no crossing continents or taming mountains.

And then I came across another of Al’s fabulous ideas… #Adventure1000

The plan is a simple one. Set up a direct debit to leave your account weekly for an amount you won’t really miss and stash it in a new bank account. When it gets to a reasonable amount of cash blow it on an adventure. Al’s suggestion is siphoning off £20 a week, which means in a year you’d have over a grand to play with. £20 a week, when you add it up to £80 a month, sounds like a lot…but this morning I spent £12.25 on breakfast, £3.99 on a magazine that only vaguely interests me and £2.95 on a cheesecake treat to go with my afternoon tea. That’s almost twenty quid right there, which I spent without even thinking. Would I make my own breakfast and read a second hand book in exchange for a life changing and soul preserving adventure? Course I bloody would!


The second part of the plan according to Al is to make a commitment. Decide your adventure and tell the world. Keep telling the world, and yourself, why you are saving. You’ve got twelve months then to arrange leave, make plans, accumulate kit and expertise…and chances are you’ve also got a birthday and Christmas when you can ask for the adventure fund to be swelled rather than socks or a Michael Bublé CD (hint hint family!)


That’s why I’ve just set up a folder in my favourites entitled “GR20“. In September next year I am flying to Corsica to walk the mountainous 180km Grande Randonnée number 20 along the spine of the island from the North to South. Staying at mountain huts along the way and taking 15 days out from the world. The next twelve months will see lots of saving, training, getting out in the hills in preparation and plenty of planning…and I can’t wait!


Is it too early to start packing?

What would YOU do with £1000 to spend on an adventure?

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12 Responses to I’m Making A Commitment…

  1. I did a very similar thing to this. With my first little savings, I bought my hiking boots. I then went for walks around where I live, breaking them in, while I continued to save. Your plan will work 🙂

  2. tessietickle says:

    Ooh I love this. Life is for living, you gotta get out there and get shit done. I’d spend the grand on a one way ticket to NZ and run/walk/cycle from the bottom of the South Island right to the tip of the North Island (granted, the grand would only cover the plane fare but I’d save a bit longer and maybe work along the way).

    Excited for your adventure James, go get it 🙂

    Oh and what the hell kind of breakfast did you buy for over £12, was it made out of gold?

    • James Clay says:

      The Boss at Boston Tea Party, with an orange juice. It’s not cheap but by God is it tasty…I miss them already.

      I have a friend who cycled North to South down NZ, it changed his life. Start saving today, make it happen! 😃

  3. Roseann says:

    What an inspiring post! Looking forward to hearing updates on your adventure!

  4. karlgwilly says:

    My problem is 15 days leave – gonna have to work extra days, save toil days and do some unpaid plus leaving family for so long but seed has been sown……

    Sent from my iPhone


  5. Mary says:

    I LOVE this idea! And I’m tempted to do the same, although I have no idea what challenge I’d like to spend the savings on. We have £1 per week that goes into an account for each of our nieces and nephews (5) and we don’t miss that money at all. I’m ready to up the game!

  6. tinyrunner85 says:

    £12:95 for breakfast?! Did you have 3??!

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