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Alastair spent four years cycling around the world, relying on the kindness of strangers and the odd bike mechanic. He has since run the Marathon des Sables, rowed the Atlantic, canoed down the Yukon and walked 1000 miles into the Empty Quarter desert. He has also started a year of ‘micro-adventures,’ to encourage audiences to take a small first step to imagining bigger challenges.
One of National Geographic’s Adventurers of the Year, Alastair Humphreys is an advocate of micro-adventures, encouraging others to commit to a challenge that is simple but not impossible. Doing something extraordinary doesn’t have to take super-human effort, something that Alastair’s stories and adventures illustrate brilliantly.
After university Alastair set out on what would become a four-year trip cycling around the world, taking in 60 countries and eventually travelling 46,000 miles. Described by Sir Ranulph Fiennes as ‘the first great adventure of the new millennium,’ Alastair relied entirely upon the kindness of strangers along the way, rather than on a support team.
He is the best-selling author of Microadventures and has been featured in the New York Times, Financial Times, National Geographic and Outside Magazine. He has also run the Marathon des Sables, rowed the Atlantic, canoed 500 miles of the Yukon, and spent some time walking a circuit around the M25. Following in the footsteps of Wilfred Thesiger, he walked 1000 miles of the desert of the Arabian peninsula, filmed as Into the Empty Quarter.
In speeches Alastair describes the importance of confronting ‘The Doorstep Mile,’ a Norwegian idea about the difficulty of overcoming the first step on a journey. His attitude towards living adventurously is infectious and he is adamant that by looking at opportunities rather than constraints, true potential can be realised. His unique cases of self-motivation demonstrate how setting small targets can enable the achievement of any professional goal. They also display the importance of pursuing long-term goals in an era of instant gratification, which exemplify the rewards of risk and teamwork.
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Humphreys on Microadventures
JLA Speakers Breakfast