This week, the Herald launches a series called You've Got To Get Out and ... in which Robert Bruce provides a guide for some of his favourite places to explore.

Robert Bruce had a high-paid job which involved lots of parties, drinking and stress.

But you wouldn't recognise him these days. He's given it all up to take groups on adventures around New Zealand.

And he's lost the stress and 30kg in doing so.

Advertisement

Bruce, 34, founded a busy marketing company while in his early 20s.

The company was ranked in the Deloitte Fast 50 in 2012 as one of the fastest growing companies in New Zealand and was soon purchased by a global PR firm.

Got To Get Out is a social enterprise with the intention of simply getting out. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Got To Get Out is a social enterprise with the intention of simply getting out. Photo / Brett Phibbs

In 2014 he was made redundant from the same company that he sold to.

In mid-2014, he decided to transform himself, by getting outdoors and changing his outlook on life.

He started with small day hikes, mountain biking, paddle boarding and surfing.

He dropped nearly 30kg during this process and by January 2015 he says he was "in the best shape of his life" and even won a body transformation challenge at his local gym after changing his body fat percentage from 30+ per cent to around 15 per cent.

He decided to launch the Got To get Out movement in 2015 during a 15-day trek to Everest Base Camp.

He said his head was clear as he hiked eight hours a day and covered 150km of steep mountains.

Advertisement
Robert Bruce believes people should great outdoors more often. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Robert Bruce believes people should great outdoors more often. Photo / Brett Phibbs

He decided he wanted to mobilise people and says social media is one of our biggest issues.

"I think that people are on it too much and we're becoming zombies," Bruce said.

"You just have to walk down Queen St to see how bad it really is."

The hiking, skiing, sailing, indoor rockclimbing and other events he offers are spread throughout the Auckland and surrounding areas, most of them free.

He still uses social media though and has attracted more than 8700 people to his Facebook page, keeping it up to date with the latest news and events.

"I have harnessed social media, even though I have a love-hate relationship with it," Bruce said.

Bruce believes people are at their happiest when they are outdoors. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Bruce believes people are at their happiest when they are outdoors. Photo / Brett Phibbs

"I post all of our events on Facebook and some of them have gone viral," he said.

Last month, the Got To get Out movement had its biggest turnout to an event when 72 people got out to walk around Mt Taranaki.

Next year, he will be working with the movement full time, having juggled it with work and other commitments until now.

"It's a lot of hard work for something that makes no money," Bruce said.

"I think there is a demand there and so the revenue model will come from like-minded sponsors."

Offering hikes of different difficulties, Bruce says it appeals to people from all walks of life.

"I'm trying to get as many people outdoors as possible.

"All you need is some grippy shoes and some water and off you go."