Nomadic adventurer and ultra-runner Aleks Kashefi (aka Barefoot Aleks), never really dreamt of adventure. It was something done by others and not for ordinary people. He made excuses as we all do why he couldn’t and never shied await from opportunities that presented themselves. At the age of 35, suffering from severe depression, he decided to act by staring to run and from C25K he quickly changed his sedentary existence into one that embraced the incomprehensible concept of ultra running. In 2015, after just 3 years of running, Aleks packed a backpack with what he believed he needed and set off to run a 1200mile route from Land’s End to John O’Groats in his 6 week school holidays. The experience of moving on a daily basis, seeing the landscape change as he travelled north and living with on no more than he could carry had a profound effect. In 2016, Aleks left his ‘normal’ life behind, quit his long term job as a teacher and set off to become the first person to run the length of Europe from north to south. After 169 days, he reached the end of his journey and has embraced the adventure lifestyle since, having less, doing more and attempting to be more. Now, he is applying what he’s learnt from 5 years of running to a deep set fear of open water and training to become the first person to swim the length of Britain self-supported.
What do I do best?
Embrace the fear of failure and minimalism to push myself beyond what I or others think we are capable of.
What makes me the best version of myself?
I am stubborn and refuse to believe that something isn’t possible until it’s been proven to me. I also feel a deep accountability to those that show support in whatever format, so even when mentally or physically broken I refuse to let them down.
What are my aspirations?
Personal – to become the first person to swim the length of Britain self-supported and to inspire others to explore new ways of viewing or using the landscape we live in.
My Biggest Success?
Small as it may seem, swimming the length of England’s deepest lake after just 1 month of relearning to swim and starting the process of making friends with my fear of water.
My Most Challenging Moment?
Knowing I have less than two days food, barely being able to stand on my injured leg and knowing that I am at least 3 days away from the nearest bit of civilization. To know that I may fail at what I set out to do early on during my solo European traverse was seriously tough when cold, seriously calorie deprived and alone.
Make Fear Your Friend and have less, do more, be more.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
Mark Beaumont, Nicky Spinks, Mimi Anderson
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
The fells and lakes of the Lake District, Scandinavian Arctic Circle wilderness.
My Favorite Products/Objects?
I adore my Luna sandals and my Sony RX100 camera. They’re my go to items.
My Current Passions?
To live a life I didn’t believe was possible as a full time adventurer and motivational speaker. To share my love of the outdoors and movement and to continue to push myself beyond what I can comprehend