Where are you right now?
This statistic floored me the first time I heard it: in developed countries, people spend more than 90% of their time indoors. More specifically, North American adults spend about 87% of their time in buildings, 6% in vehicles and only a teensy 7% outdoors.
That’s about 100 minutes outside per day, and when it’s summarized that way, that really doesn’t seem that unusual. I am sure that there are days in the winter where I’m lucky to get outside 10 minutes per day. But it’s still a bit depressing to think that we (or at least I) spend such a measly amount of time outside.
Even more depressing: after crunching the numbers in the late 1980s, scientist Dr. Wayne R. Ott called humans an “indoor species.”
And, for that reason, I made sure to write this article while sitting outside on our porch on a nice summer night.
Last fall, I challenged myself to get outside for at least a half hour every day during the fall. This didn’t include the time spent walking to/from my car or other small trips—it was dedicated nature time. There are some challenges like this, such as the 30×30 Challenge or 30 Days Wild (happening this month!).
But 30 is still a long way from breaking over 100 minutes per day and reversing the trend of moving increasingly indoors—not to mention trying to spend more time outside than in a vehicle.
I’m keeping better track of how much time I get out nowadays, and hopefully developing some good habits that last beyond the nice, summer weather.
What about you? How much time do you spend outside?