Updated: Sep 30, 2022
This experience has been created for men, to allow them to take a step back from the craziness of modern life, to join together with other like-minded men, to share and to leave feeling energised – enabling them to show up in the world as who they really are.
It's about connecting with other men, but also connecting to nature, or I should say, reconnecting with nature (the forgotten requirement for healthy living) and perhaps most importantly yourselves.
This is the purpose of the Wild Reboot Day; to share, connect, and energise.
Men- don't ignore your mental health!
About me and James
Myself (AKA The Outdoor Bloke) and James O'Keefe of the Unguarded Warrior are the hosts. We take enthusiastic men to The Roaches, a world-renowned area of the Peak District National Park, which has been my stomping ground for over 15 years.
I've been taking people here and to other wild and remote places all over the world and really want to give people the opportunity to experience these places as well. To connect with wild places, but to also step away from the stress of modern life and to connect with themselves – their own wild nature that lies dormant inside so many. I have felt the benefits first-hand in myself, but I have also seen it in the clients I've taken to these places over the last decade. Therefore, my new mission is to help the uninspired adventurer revive their body and mind – naturally!
What is an uninspired adventurer? You know, someone with that adventurous streak but that has become a little lost, stagnant and is existing in autopilot! I help to strip back many layers of modern life, such as the food we eat, the exercise we take and generally the everyday habits that don’t support us, to help achieve this mission. Nature and adventure play a huge role in this!
James is an ex-professional MMA fighter, multiple business owner and reformed addict, on a mission to bring together men and show that it’s ok for us to talk about our feelings, take control of our health and wellness and that there is always ‘another way’ to live our lives. He is the founder of the Unguarded Warrior (https://www.unguardedwarrior.com/) facilitating men’s retreat weekends the way you’ve always wanted.
The Main Event!
Earthing and Adventure
After our introductions, we took our shoes off and started grounding to the earth and rocks, to tune in at an energetic level. We hopped boulders (with shoes back on), peered over the cliff edge and squeezed through little holes in the rock. We climbed, shuffled and moved as one. We laughed a lot and straight off the bat we got into some awesome “below the surface” chatter. Basically, not the typical small talk you generally expect!
The Hike and Connection
From there, we hiked for a few miles, passing one of the Earth’s lay lines, before reaching the summit of the roaches and seeing stunning views right across the plains of Cheshire. We then quickly lost height and made our way down into the valley and into the tree line. As soon as we hit the woods we stopped and “checked in with ourselves”, an intuitive connection with ourselves that we have all but forgotten! James opened up and shared some of his vulnerabilities that he experienced recently and over the years, while other men were invited to do the same. It was a touching moment while we held space for each other.
It should be noted at this point that everything in the day is done with love and compassion. You are invited to join in with the sharing space, but by no means is there a requirement. This is no military boot camp and sometimes we learn most by listening and observing!
The Landscape, the Cold Plunge and the Warm-Up!
The journey continued and we slid down hills and crossed a stream on fallen tree logs. Intermittently stopping to learn about the flora, fauna and geology of the area. We then found our secluded spot, which comprised a shallow pool with a nice grassy/mossy patch. Together we lay back and breathed deeply and consciously - filling our bodies with oxygen and further tuning into ourselves. We did a few rounds of this which were expertly guided and then mindfully, as a unit, we stepped into the water in our shorts. Huddled like a scrum, we fully submerged ourselves, supporting each other as we went. We sat in the bitterly cold water for several minutes, breathing and accepting the overpowering sensations from the cold.
A matter of minutes later we exited and performed some warm-up exercises and the all-important release of some pent-up male testosterone with a few belly yells, that assumedly the whole valley could hear! We got dressed and quickly got moving to naturally warm ourselves up. Once warmed we gathered atop a rocky outcrop with fantastic views of the area. Again, we naturally slide into some deep chat, while James’ chocolatey salty balls came out! No, the day didn’t take a strange turn, but rather James had made some chocolate keto balls which everyone thoroughly enjoyed.
Nature can be the best medicine
To finish, we stepped back in time when we entered the natural cavern that is Lud’s Church, a real gem that has historical significance to the area, all before we undertook a 3-mile stomp to get back to the cars.
Our bodies knew that we'd been moving for seven hours, but they were energised (not drained) along with our minds, our spirit and with a new appreciation for ourselves, the environment, and our new friends!
What an amazing day!