Emma was lacking the motivation to head out on those big adventures she loves. So she set herself a challenge to find her adventure spirit again – a hike before and after work every day for a week.


We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the Countries on which these adventures take place who have occupied and cared for these lands, waters, and their inhabitants for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.

Spring had officially sprung! For those of us who can’t do much more during winter than watch documentaries of adventures, this was our time to shine. Even though the weather was slowly becoming warmer, the persistent rain left me with a severe lack of the ‘get up and go’ needed to inspire the huge adventures I love.

I was finding it harder to find any motivation or creativity and decided I needed a challenge, a way to bring adventure back into my daily life.

I challenged myself to complete a hike, walk or run before and after work every day for a week.


Adventures were fit in at the beginning and end of the work day


I wanted to fit it around work, around a normal day as that’s what I find the most challenging. The majority of these adventures I went on by myself, something I’ve never done before and that was a challenge in itself.

A new little fear to conquer. I decided they all needed to be trails I had never been to, giving myself the greatest opportunity to explore.

To be completely honest, this took two attempts to complete. In the first week I barely made it to Wednesday. I found it surprisingly hard to set aside time for myself and with the never ending miserable rain, I felt disheartened that I might not complete the challenge.

Finding my motivator was hard. Regardless, the following week I finally made it back out – attempt number two!

Read more: Remember to leave no trace!


  • Hike – Lawson Waterfall Circuit – 3.1km
  • Hike – Fairy Falls and Dantes Glen Falls – 2.1km

The first day, was cold and raining but I was determined to make this week work. I decided the best way to make the most of the rainy weather was to go searching for waterfalls. I headed out towards Lawson and made a day of it, working from a small cafe during the day. Both sections I hiked formed part of longer trails but I chose to do these to maximise the number of waterfalls in the smallest amount of time. The rain eventually cleared for the afternoon and I saw some of the most beautiful waterfalls with hardly anyone around to share the trails with. What a way to start the week!


The first day I went waterfall chasing!


Feeling excited at the idea of seeing the sunrise I made it out to Malabar Headland this morning for a little run. This left me feeling incredibly motivated for the rest of the day.

I decided to take it easy in the afternoon with a small walk and a sunset picnic at a beautiful spot in America Bay with a little lizard who kept me company at the lookout. Nothing beats watching the sunrise and sunset on the same day!


  • Hike – Greys Point to Audley Loop via Hacking River – 6.2km
  • Hike – Forest Path – 4.5km

Wednesday was a difficult day. Getting out on a trail was the last thing I felt like before work in the headspace I was in. Fighting the urge to stay in bed all day, I convinced myself to drive to the start of the trail and if I still didn’t feel like it once I was there, I wouldn’t force it.

I begrudgingly started the trail, stomping through the mud asking myself, ‘What I was doing here?’.

Towards the end of the trail, I realised my mindset had completely changed to feeling incredibly free and grateful.

I was even enjoying how walking through the rain allowed me to feel more connected to nature and made my thoughts much more clear. I promised myself to remember that feeling was possible the next time I stumbled into a difficult day.


  • Hike – Cooper Park Walk – 3.2km
  • Hike – Harold Reid Foreshore Track – 3.2km

One of my highlights of this week was discovering incredible places close to home that I’d never even heard of before. My favorite discovery was the Cooper Park Walk – it’s so close to the city but feels so far away.


Walking through the greenery felt like being in a fairy garden!


The path that winds around the little waterfalls and adorable resting spots felt more like a secret fairy garden than a park in the city. This was a much busier trail than the other ones I’d walked so far, but was so worth it.

The evening walk was calming, I spent it searching for a little echidna that supposedly resides in the area, with no luck.


My evening walk!


The final day! The morning walk felt peaceful as I explored, enjoying the feeling of making it to the end of the challenge. Later that day a friend joined me for the final hike of the week after work.


Reaching the final day felt fulfilling!


As much as I’d enjoyed the time alone throughout the week, it felt so nice sharing the final hike with a friend, as well as the obligatory beers and pub feed to celebrate afterwards!


After the final adventure, celebrations were in order!

If I’ve learnt anything from this challenge, it’s that adventure can be something that we enjoy everyday, inspiring and leaving us feeling like the best version of ourselves.

I feel incredibly proud for setting the time aside to do something by myself, for myself. The second attempt was successful because I found my motivator.

I decided to not be so harsh on myself. It worried me that the hikes weren’t long enough, impressive enough or unique enough. I had to remind myself why I genuinely wanted to do this, for my own mental health and personal growth. Just to see what I was capable of.


Feature image thanks to @embarlow_