One of the most common concerns of newly clean and sober individuals is, “I’ll never be able to have fun again without drinking or getting high”. Let’s be honest, when people think about FUN places to be, Kentucky doesn’t usually rank in on their top 5 lists, but that’s just because they haven’t explored the beautiful and adventurous state!
JourneyPure encourages all individuals to explore, to create, and to immerse themselves in the wild and exciting activities that Kentucky has to offer. Through adventure therapy in the program, and in their sober lives beyond, there are so many fun activities for both thrillseekers and relaxers alike!
Okay, say for example, during your addiction you consider yourself something of a thrillseeker. Whether it was through the drugs you experimented with or the… “experiences” you had. If missing out on that adrenaline rush is what is holding you back from getting sober, consider yourself out of a good excuse. Rock climbing is your new fix.
Granted, it can be dangerous, but when done properly and safely, it is the best feeling in the world! Kentucky is literally a hub that rock climbers from all over the world travel to and is widely considered some of the best climbing in the United States.
Not only is it a good workout, but it is also somewhat of a therapy session each time you get out there on the wall. Through climbing, you will experience just about every emotion possible, and you will come out on top, unscathed, and ready to go again. It teaches you how to push through fear, how to trust yourself, how to connect your mind and body and breathing, and how to support and rely on others to help you through the tough stuff. Plus, its free to get out there into nature with some good friends and some good snacks!
Some awesome rock climbing crags and gyms to check out in Kentucky are:
- Red River Gorge in North Eastern Kentucky
- Vertical eXcape right near you in Bowling Green!
- LEF Climbing Gym right outside of Lexington
- Rock Gem, Rocksport, and Elemental Climbing gyms in Louisville
Once you are out of treatment and living a sober life through working the 12 steps, it IS possible to be able to go to a concert again. Gather a group of sober friends, and head downtown to the summer concert series going on in your town! These are usually great places to gather for sober communities because town-sponsored events such as these are primarily family affairs.
Forewarning, check yourself and your motives for going to the show, consider the type of show you are going to, and always have some strong sober people with you when you go. Live music can be a real hoot, and Kentucky is also known as the Bluegrass State, so you should go and enjoy yourself to some good tunes, and good friends!
Always check with your sponsor and pray about it ahead of time though, because even a family affair can have some party goers, so be careful, take care of yourself, and always have an escape route if things get prickly!
50 years ago, no one could have guessed that a majority of people in the rooms of 12 step fellowships would be under the age of 35. Today, young people across the country are joining together to create a safe, fun, and sober community, and because of that, tons of events take place in Young People of AA and NA communities, all over the country!
Kentucky is no different. Whether it be barbeques, campouts, conferences, or concerts, young people communities throughout Kentucky aim to help people in early sobriety find the community they seek and learn how to get involved, stay sober, and enjoy their lives.
If you want to get involved in the YPAA events in your area, check out your districts meeting calendar for Young People meetings, and get connected!
Hiking, Kayaking, Canoeing
If you like being outside, or if you want to start being a person that likes being outside (it’s good for you!) then Kentucky is the place to be. There are countless rivers, peaks, forests, nature preserves, and cave systems throughout the state.
- Hiking in Louisville: Check out areas outside of Louisville such as the Parklands of Floyds Fork which has over 1,000 acres of land to hike through, including dog parks, biking trails, sports fields, historic sites, and areas to paddle out on a canoe from!
- Hiking at Mammoth Cave National Park: With over 80 miles of trails right outside of Bowling Green, Mammoth Cave has something for everyone. Check out Tall Man’s Misery, which is a natural cave system embedded into the Park’s Historic Cave tour, be sure to watch your head!
- Natural Slide in Slade: The Red River Gorge is chock full of outdoor adventure activities like hikes, kayaking, and swimming holes. Check out the Rock Bridge Trail #207 for a 1.5-mile hike that has a waterfall that you can slide down!
Ziplining and High Ropes
If thrills and heights are your thing, Kentucky has you covered on zip lining and ropes course adventure parks. Thrill seekers can head to just about any corner of the state for a sober and exciting day of adventure. For example:
- The Red River Gorge is chock full of zipline locations!
- There is also Mega Cavern in Louisville, that has created a zipline, bike park, and aerial ropes course all completely underground!
- Mammoth Cave Adventures has zip lining, horseback riding, and high ropes courses right outside of Bowling Green.
- There is also the Hidden River Cave in Horse Cave, where you can zipline into the region’s largest cave entrance, or you can hike into it, and even rappel down it!
They say that boredom in sobriety is a recipe for relapse, but they also say that only boring people get bored! There are endless opportunities for adventure and fun in Kentucky, and being sober means not only will you be able to afford it, but even better, is that you will also be able to remember it!
It can be overwhelming even thinking about going to rehab, never mind actually doing it. However, if you are suffering from even just one of these signs, reaching out for help is the best chance you have to put an end to your substance use disorder for good.
Do not ignore yourself and your needs. You are worth getting the appropriate treatment so that you no longer have to live in this dangerous cycle of abuse. Reach out to us right now. We can help.
Chris Clancy is the in-house Content Manager for JourneyPure’s Digital Marketing team, where he gets to explore a wide variety of substance abuse- and mental health-related topics. He has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist and researcher, with strong working knowledge of hospital systems, health insurance, content strategy, and public relations. He lives in Nashville with his wife and two kids.