Meet Mr Challenge 365.
He’s the man taking on the world one challenge at a time and doing one thing every day that scares him. Disillusioned with the 9-5 day job he gave it all up last year to travel and hasn’t looked back at England since. I caught up with the man himself to talk dumplings, challenges and why we all need to travel.
Q- So, who or what is Mr Challenge 365?
Mr Challenge 365- OK, to put it simply, I’m going to complete 365 challenges (…imaginative name right?). These challenges could be anything at all, all over the world.
Q- What’s the aim of this project?
Mr Challenge 365- I want it to be a giant bucket list. I’m not sure exactly what the aim is at the end of this, or if there’s a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow. I guess my pot of gold will be just be the memories I created!
Q- What do you see as a challenge?
Mr Challenge 365- To me a challenge could be anything… something I never expected to do when I was younger, before I discovered how easy it is to travel to different countries and step out of your comfort zone. I’ve now run with the bulls, cycled to Berlin, trekked in Nepal and I’m only just getting started!
Q- A lot of people talk about quitting the day job and trading it for travel, what motivated you to actually do it?
Mr Challenge 365- The main thing for me was setting a date. As soon as you have a date in mind then you can begin to prepare your head for quitting work- rather than constantly putting it off and eventually changing your mind. I also decided to sell pretty much everything I owned back in England, putting myself under pressure to make sure I have to make money on the road and start again somewhere else
Q- Have you managed to complete one challenge a day? Will you keep going until you’ve finished the whole 365?
Mr Challenge 365- To be honest… no. I’ve sort of dropped off the radar in the last few months for a number of reasons. It hasn’t helped that I broke my laptop and my camera was stolen… but mainly I’ve just been enjoying myself too much. I’m going to be starting again soon though so watch this space!
Q- Where have the challenges taken you so far? Where else will they take you?
Mr Challenge 365- So far my challenges have taken me through 3 continents and I’m currently working in Australia, looking to build up some cash so I can start again. I’m on my 49th country visited right now and I plan to visit them all before I die… so who knows what will happen.
Q- Which challenge has challenged you the most?
Mr Challenge 365– This isn’t something I can share yet as I’m still making the video- but the worst was probably the Momo competition. ‘Whats momo?’ Well, Momo is like a Tibetan dumpling filled with various ingredients (e.g. buffalo, cheese, goat, chicken) and then deep fried. Anyway, I got to 50 before I was sick… the video should be out soon.
Q- Have the challenges left you in any precarious situations?
Mr Challenge 365- Trekking to Annapurna left us in a pretty difficult spot. We were all pretty fit so the climb wasn’t that bad. The problem was that none of us thought to bring money with us and surprisingly there are no ATM’s on a mountain… Anyway we survived on raw instant noodles and Nepali hospitality and made it back down in one piece.
Q- What’s the most inspiring thing you’ve seen on the journey?
Mr Challenge 365- The generosity of local people. Always sharing food, happy to show you around or help you out. Sure, there are those who are just looking for money, but for the most part people are inherently friendly I think.
Q- Who’s the most inspiring individual you’ve encountered?
Mr Challenge 365- I met a guy in Jakarta who’d cycled there from Belgium. He was about half way through a world tour and had about another year to go. Funnily enough, in the same hostel was a guy cycling from Sydney in the opposite direction.
Q- What’s the most ridiculous challenge you’ve finished?
Mr Challenge 365- Climbing Adams Peak in Sri Lanka. It’s meant to be a religious pilgrimage that you complete in a day but ours didn’t exactly go to plan. We decided to use public transport to get to the mountain and expected it to be easy enough (we were very wrong).
After 14 hours of buses, trains and tuk-tuks we arrived at Adams Peak at 2 in the morning to begin the night time ascent (you have to get there for sunrise). So with no sleep, we climbed the mountain in the rain. When you get to the top there’s meant to be an awesome view of the sunrise… we could barely see 5 metres in front of us! So we turned around and made the 3 hour climb back down, and the 14 hour journey back to our hostel. Still, it was a nice walk…
Q- Is there anything you regret having done or not done on the journey?
Mr Challenge 365-I regret not having kept up with the videos and blog writing so far. Life’s about lessons though, so I’m going to be starting up again and plan to be back bigger, better and bolder.
Q- Is anything too ambitious?
Mr Challenge 365- Nothing’s too ambitious. I believe anything can be accomplished in time- it just takes perseverance, hard work and little bit of good luck.
Q- What happens when you complete all 365 challenges?
Mr Challenge 365- I guess I have to go back home and find a real job…
Q- Is this a life plan then, to challenge the world?
Mr Challenge 365- Sure. Well, I’ll start with the world anyway.
Interview by Richard Collett
You can keep up with Mr Challenge 365’s blog at www.mrchallenge365.com
You can watch him take on the world- doing one thing every day that scares him- on YouTube.
He also now has a daily video blog, showing people how to travel the world on a budget. Check it out at TheLifeOfJord.
All images in this article provided by MrChallenge365.