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Not everybody understands how and why people do things deemed 'ridiculous' or 'crazy' or 'absolutely useless' – like choosing to cycle 6,500 km across the entire country in 65 days on a budget, then just a couple of months later doing something you genuinely don't like and choosing to run its length along the Nile – 1,500 km in just over a month – from Abu Simbel to Alexandria, then another few months later announcing that you're aiming to set a record by swimming the length of Egypt in the Red Sea. But here's the thing: they shouldn't understand it. Experiences like these are far more complicated than to just be explained and understood; only through experiencing it can you truly wrap your head around it. Yet since not all of us are able – physically or otherwise – to experience it for ourselves, we bombarded Egyptian adventurer Omar El Galla with 21 questions ahead of his attempt at a record-setting swim of the length of Egypt in the Red Sea. Maybe he'll help make sense of it.

PART 1: THE PREP

01: What type of preparations did you take ahead of your next adventure?
02: Are there any mental health preparations involved in the process?
03: How good of a natural swimmer you initially were before you started any of your preparation?
04: Walk us through your daily training routine.
05: Do you maintain any type of pre-planned routine while you're on an adventure, or do you just make it happen as you go along?
06: How do you plan on accommodating an environment so different than what you're used to?
07: What are your plans for food, shelter, and all that stuff?
08: Walk us through your emergency procedures for an adventure like this.

PART 2: DIGGING DEEP

09: Do you feel a sort of catharsis after and while you're on the road? What goes through your mind when you are in it?
10: How do you keep your spirits high?
11: What do you think will be the toughest challenge you face in the open sea?
12: What are you hoping to find at the 900 km finish line?
13: What value do you see yourself getting out of this experience?
14: Is it hard maintaining relationships while you're on the road? Does being a full-time adventurer take a toll on your personal life?

PART 3: EVERYTHING ELSE

15: Is this still a budget-friendly challenge?
16: Why is financial support so vital to adventurers?
17: What was your favourite encounter with random strangers on the road?
18: You've cycled, ran, and swam; are there any more adventures left for you in Egypt?
19: What's next for you after you've completed your triathlon?
20: What's one piece of advice you would give to an aspiring adventurer who hasn't taken the leap?
21: Aside from the thrill of adventure, what gets you out of bed?

 

What type of preparations did you take ahead of your next adventure? 

Preparations involve a lot of training, really. You need to rack up the miles in the pool. Outdoors training – the non-swim related training – has to do with injury prevention to make myself as indestructible as possible to be able to pull this off. The main thing is that if you don't get injured, you'll most probably finish the challenge. Prevention is key, so I do a lot of weight-lifting, a lot of core work – especially the upper body – to avoid shoulder injury, which is my biggest fear right now. A lot of preparations have to do with research: the route I'm going to take, how we're going to stock up the boat and the logistics of it, storing food, the gear that I'm wearing, planning to accommodate for different scenarios, and how to deal with any emergency. I train three times a day with a nutrition plan that I'm following, too – more or less the same nutrition plan that I'm going to follow on the boat. 

 Doing all those challenges is actually my therapy.

Are there any mental health preparations involved in the process?

I always find the physical effort that's involved in moving, cycling, running and swimming is already very therapeutic. You release a lot of endorphins; it's like meditation. I used to cycle just to get my head into a nice mental state, and now the swimming actually puts me in a really good mental state. You're already prepared to be looking at the water for hours, so you're basically meditating as long as you're swimming, and that for me is the mental preparation part.

I'm doing two sessions of swimming a day and that for me is very therapeutic and healing, where my mind is turned off and my head is clear. That's where some of the best ideas come, and everything is clear. My time off mentally would be the time I'm swimming, preparing me for the sea swim. From the cycle and the run, I'm already used to doing strenuous things, not talking to anyone, and just being in my head. Going back, I'm always doing that as it makes me happy. It's my therapy from the start. Doing all those challenges is actually my therapy." 

   

How good of a natural swimmer you initially were before you started any of your preparation?

I did maybe 10 different sports when I was younger – squash, basketball, gymnastics, judo, and swimming was always there. I think I was swimming for seven years straight and I quit when I was 11. From five to 11 years old I used to swim with the swimming team so it came naturally – I always knew how to swim but haven't trained properly since I was 11. In my early twenties, I spent two or three years spearfishing every weekend – spending six hours at sea for two or three days straight looking for fish to hunt. So I got used to spending a lot of time at sea, but not swimming or free diving. Let's just say I had previous swimming training that has stuck with me and nice exposure to the sea when I was older so I'm used to sea conditions. But I haven't been a swimmer since I was 11 and never really a diver.

Since I did a lot of sports, I catch onto things really quickly. When I started swimming again, it came a bit naturally. Working with my brother who is an assistant swim coach at the Carlton University in Canada, he improved my techniques and, from there, I started swimming every day so I think I got used to it. The swimming training that I did when I was younger – that I was dragged to – really paid off. And obviously, the spearfishing that I did broke this fear of being in the open sea. 

No matter how much you plan for something and train for it, nothing really prepares you for what you're about to do.  

 

Walk us through your daily training routine.

To walk you through my day, I'm either preparing a meal, eating, training, researching, or communicating with someone between emails and phone calls. I eat five meals a day: four main ones and a snack meal. I have pre-workout meals; they're not insanely big meals, but the ingredients are to the point to maintain me throughout my day. Before sticking to that plan, I used to be low on energy all the time, but now my energy levels are okay.

I wake up, I have breakfast, send a couple of emails and work on my laptop, then I have a pre-workout meal – a coffee, maybe, and a banana – and I do my first workout session of the day. I usually swim twice a day and do one outdoor training session. Because it's impossible to recreate the same distance for every day, I do higher intensity sessions to improve my cruising speed and my technique while I'm tired. After the first session, I go back and have another meal and work for a bit; then, another pre-workout meal, the second session, then I come back and have another meal and a snack, then another pre-workout mean, and then I go for a final workout and a final meal.

You can imagine I'm always preparing food, eating, or training; whatever time I have in-between, I dedicate to research and communication with my partners and potential sponsors. By now there's barely enough time for me to do anything else. By the end of the day, I'm exhausted; I just pass out and then wake up to repeat it all again the next day. This is my routine from Sunday to Thursday.

On Friday I usually go out at sea – usually Sokhna, if not Gouna or Dahab. I do a distance of 15 kilometers at sea from the shore, unless I'm in Gouna then I go out with a boat and the crew that I have. We go out into the sea and test out different strategies swimming in the open sea and getting used to each other working as a team. Saturdays are off training, but I still have a lot of communications to handle and a lot of things to write – I try to spend some time with my loved ones, friends, and family, but I still do some work on my laptop as well.

  

Do you maintain any type of pre-planned routine while you're on an adventure, or do you just make it happen as you go along?

I did end up maintaining a sort of routine on the road, but it wasn't the one I'd originally planned for during the run or the cycle. No matter how much you plan for something and train for it, nothing really prepares you for what you're about to do. And then on the road you find yourself falling into this routine that works –– it actually is convenient and it works on the ground and it gets the job done. You usually start with the planned routine and you start deviating and deviating and adjusting it until you find the one that works for you.

I think I can still do this on my next adventure; it might even be easier to fall into a routine because I actually have two six-hour windows to swim – one in the morning and one at night. I prefer to swim during daylight, so I have this six- maybe seven-hour window to complete the day's distance. That'll force me into this kind of routine where I have to swim in a specific time and finish the distance in a specific time and the rest of the day will revolve around that. So I think everything will fall into place and it will definitely be much easier to maintain that routine during the swim.

What I do is when I go swimming at sea every one or two weeks is that I swim at the same time that I'm expecting to swim during my trip. When the tide is with me, from 10:30 AM to 4:30 PM, I go one hour earlier like when there's slack water between two tides so the water is not under stress and it's not really moving in either direction. I get into the water and I try to finish the distance that I want to do every day, usually between 12-15 kilometers. During that time, I've tried different strategies; one was taking a break every two hours, drinking water with some minerals in it, having a banana and a couple of dates, and resting for 15 minutes. If it's a six-hour swim, I have two breaks in the middle and that has worked nicely for me. Another strategy that I think I'm gonna stick to because I need more water in my system is to stop every hour, drink some water, have a couple of dates, then some more water. Maybe the next hour have a longer break, 15 minutes instead of five, and maybe have a banana as well and continue until the six hours are finished. That way you keep yourself hydrated and refueled all the time. The strategy is to finish the distance in the six or seven-hour window that I'm getting each day, and that's what I've been preparing and training to do." 

  

How do you plan on accommodating an environment so different than what you're used to?

I have a support ship, a support crew, a support zodiac – all this to accommodate the fact that I'll be at sea. It's not normal for humans to survive at sea so I guess throwing in more resources will help tip the scale a little bit in my favour. At the end of the day, during my previous trips, I was on land; you could source food on land, whenever I was tired I would rest, I could sleep whenever, I could always just rest my head on the ground. If there was an emergency you could get evacuated, you could flag a car down or something. But at sea, I need a place to sleep, a place to store food and eat; I need a way of evacuation in case of an emergency, and that is where the support comes in.

 

What are your plans for food, shelter, and all that stuff?

This time I don't have to carry anything around with me, I have a support boat with me and I also have an inflatable motorboat or zodiac. I sleep on the boat and then swim for six or seven hours then go back to the boat and sleep in my cabin with food ready and delivered during the swim by the zodiac. So this is actually way better, where I would finish the physical part of it and immediately have a place to sleep and food to eat. I have my moving house, which is sailable using the wind, this way we could use less gas  – we do have a motor that we will use only to maneuver to use up less gas. During the swim, I'll have the zodiac next to me, so that'll provide me with food and water. The zodiac is also there for safety reasons and to direct me because you get so disoriented in the sea. After I finish swimming for the day, I get on the zodiac to go back to the main boat. The moment I get on the zodiac, I'll be taking the GPS coordinates of where I stopped swimming. After I get back to the main boat I will eat, rest, and have a conversation with the crew about a place to moor and spend the night since most of the time we probably won't be docking at a marina. Next day, we need to be at the exact coordinates again where they drop me back off at 10 AM to start swimming and do this all over again all the way til Shalateen. 

A lot of people do this through art, writing, playing a musical instrument, singing, or dancing – and I think maybe this is my way of letting go of a lot of emotions. 

Walk us through your emergency procedures for an adventure like this.

This time we have a number of things because of the alien environment, being at sea. I'll start with the support boat: it'll be accompanying me all the time as a moving base to eat and sleep on. When I'm in the water I'll have a zodiac accompanying me all the time, moving next to me throughout all the swim. I'll also be towing a safety buoy where I can just grab onto it in case of any emergency. We have first-aid kits both on the zodiac and the boat, we have a person who can administer CPR, and we also have an evacuation plan in place for any person in need to the nearest port for an ambulance or a hospital. We also have a large flag for visibility; we'll be deploying the use of flare guns, blinking lights, and glow sticks. We have wireless audio communication equipment, GPS trackers, and satellite phones.

 

Do you feel a sort of catharsis after and while you're on the road? What goes through your mind when you are in it?

That's a bit of a heavy question. To be frank, what started all this was the feeling of wanting to let go, and I guess that was my way of letting go of a lot of things that have been weighing on me – that's where everything came from in the first place. A lot of people do this through art, writing, playing a musical instrument, singing, or dancing – and I think maybe this is my way of letting go of a lot of emotions. What started all that was the point where you want to push yourself somewhere and maybe get something out of it. Usually, these things are heavy and I think when you go out there on those trips you become lighter and you feel the weight lifted off your shoulders. You have a lot of things going through your head – you have a lot of weight and, usually, these things get out one way or the other. Now for me, these things come out towards the second half, towards the end of the journey. Afterward, it's like I've gotten this thing out, I feel like I'm blank when the journey is over; finishing the journey is a bit underwhelming with this blank, bland feeling. You sit there and maybe you reflect a little bit but by then it's done. So usually it's not after, it's in it and towards the end, or the hardest part in the middle. 

Towards the end of the running journey when I reached Cairo, I sat on the pavement by the side of the road and suddenly I was overwhelmed – I was tearing up with a rush of emotions. By that point, I was more than a thousand kilometers into the challenge, I had made it all the way from Abu Simbel and I felt so light. Thinking back on how heavy I felt before starting the trip, telling myself ‘look where you are now' and feeling a lot lighter. In this challenge particularly, it was a reflection on my life, where I was before and all the burdens that I had and where I was when I was done. I made it, I actually made it. I was in disbelief that I'm here right now and I did it; it's a big shift of emotions from starting the run and what I was feeling by the end of it. Looking back one year earlier, I was hitting rock bottom with no way out; I thought I'd lost everything I was working toward and was feeling so low – the lowest point in my life. One year later, this is where I am and this is what I'm achieving; I've made it and I'm capable and happy. I couldn't even imagine this one year ago or even the day I started. Five years ago, even when I was well in life, I wouldn't have imagined I could achieve that. It's that moment of realization of how far I've made it, everything weighing me down was released, telling myself over and over ‘look where I am now' –– I couldn't believe it. At that point, from Cairo to Alexandria, I was on auto-pilot; the purpose of the run was done, I was only there to finish it. But everything came to that moment in Cairo, the purpose of the journey was fulfilled.

 Looking at nothing and listening to nothing for 7 hours a day? I'm just talking about it right now and I'm realizing it's going to be big.

How do you keep your spirits high?

I usually end up entering this meditative state and, being in that state, everything just passes – time passes in a different way, you don't feel pain or exhaustion in the same way. I think you never allow yourself to think about the distance or the number of days you still have to endure. I never allow myself to think that because if you let yourself think about that it will defeat you. Always have smaller goals within the day or a goal to just finish the day, to finish a certain distance. I think one of the hardest things usually is the first few days when you're still in awe of the enormity of the task, but what I do is as soon as I finish a round figure or a distance – like for example I finished 100 kilometers or a certain percentage – then I tell myself I can do this 20 more times and I'll be done. The trick is when I finish 10 percent, I play mind games and tell myself now it's 10 times what I did!

There are times that I struggle to find the motivation or the strength to keep moving, but I tell myself to go for just one more. Sometimes I'd play the numbers game and tell myself to reach a thousand and then we'll see, and by the time I reach a thousand, I tell myself, you know what? I can do another thousand. I do that till suddenly my mind goes back to the meditative state where time passes faster with no pain and no more counting. And that's how things are done!

  Curiosity is what's driving me right now. I want to know what's going to happen, how I'm going to come out on the other side. Who am I going to be? What am I going to be?

What do you think will be the toughest challenge you face in the open sea?

I think ultimately one of the things that I'm worried about is the friction of the swimsuit with my body –– any wounds or chafing while always moving. I'll be wearing a full-body swimsuit to protect myself from being exposed to a lot of salty water all the time and to protect myself from hypothermia. Swimming all the time with wounds and bearing the pain  –– this is one concern that I don't think anyone would think about. It'll be like a hidden kind of pain that's not obvious at first glance.

Another obvious one about this challenge is that I'm doing almost 90 days of swimming and during the swim itself I won't be interacting with anyone – I'm just basically staring at the water. I'm spending a long time on a boat – the longest I've ever spent. This will be challenging, doing this with a small number of people and little interaction but it'll be interesting; a whole different experience. Surviving on a boat with a very small crew for three months and actually doing this strenuous thing for 90 days  – I don't know how I'm going to be affected by it, I've never done this before. Looking at nothing and listening to nothing for 7 hours a day? I'm just talking about it right now and I'm realizing it's going to be big. But again, I'm very much looking forward to the experience. Curiosity is what's driving me right now. I want to know what's going to happen, how I'm going to come out on the other side. Who am I going to be? What am I going to be?

 

What are you hoping to find at the 900 km finish line?

This is a very tough question. Here is the thing: I'm doing it and I'm hoping to find something, not sure exactly what it is but I know I'm certain I'm going to find something that is so unexpected. Hopefully, it will make me grow, make me a bigger and better person. So the short answer is I don't know what I'm hoping to find but I'm sure I'm going to find something. Ultimately this is the aim of what I'm doing now and what I did before: I'm going on these adventures in the hopes of finding something that makes me grow, that makes me a better person, and adds more to me.

 

What value do you see yourself getting out of this experience?

I think from this particular experience I will gain a lot of knowledge at sea – how the tide works, navigating at sea, and how to survive at sea for that long doing a lot of sailing and swimming. I'll know a lot about the Red Sea and the life in it and I'll get to see every little reef, every little island, and so I'll really get to know the coastline of Egypt and the marine life like the back of my hand. But I think I'll get to know myself a little bit more; spending that much time with yourself and with a limited amount of people on a small floating house in the middle of a very hostile environment, you'll gain a lot of things you may not even recognize.

You have to understand that I did all of this in a year. So, not even a year ago, I started my cycling trip and the amount of things that I gained – practical knowledge and knowledge of myself – in the two months that I cycled, that knowledge would usually take years to gain – the knowledge that I have now of Egypt, the geography of it and people living around the country. I have seen Egypt, really seen it with the people living there and everything – all of that in just two months. The same happened with the run, I've met a lot of diverse people in one month. I've become an expert in everything to do with a bicycle during the bike tour and instantly I had this immense knowledge of the country and its people that would've taken me years and I still wouldn't have collected that amount of knowledge and experience – the same goes for the swimming. 

But, eventually, you start broadening your horizons and you actually start knowing what you're capable of, you have the audacity to dream bigger and have bigger goals – the audacity of actually taking on bigger tasks and thinking, you know what? Maybe I can do them, these things that would've seemed impossible to think about months or years before. Now you can think about them and you can realistically see yourself doing them.

Finally, the experience; how many people would know what it feels like to swim every day for three months, looking at the bottom of the sea? How many people would live that experience? And with running and cycling, how many people have done that, living on the streets and sleeping anywhere? So the unique conditions that I put myself into actually allow me to live a very unique experience that not a lot of people have lived and therefore maybe I'll gain something unique and different that will add a lot to me.

 

Is it hard maintaining friendships/relationships while you're on the road? Do you think that being a full-time adventurer takes a toll on your personal life or enriches it?

It is a bit hard maintaining friendships and relationships on the road. I tend to get so immersed in the experience that even if I have access I don't really communicate and I like it that way, to immerse myself in the experience. There are some communications with certain loved ones, family members, and friends throughout the trips – so genuine and real with higher connection, even though the communication has diminished, it's actually richer and it brings us closer. My relationship with my parents has improved a lot and we became so much closer during those trips. It's hard to keep those relationships going especially if the other party wouldn't understand why you're not being so communicative, but most people understand that. Whatever small encounters we have throughout those challenges, when I come back I feel closer. In a way, it's not hard maintaining relationships, it's hard maintaining the communication. But whenever it happens, it is so much richer and it improves the relationship. 

Being a full-time adventurer definitely takes a toll on your life. Your time is so limited, you're doing something that you love and you're giving everything. But the problem is that preparing for it takes so much time. Sometimes I wish I had more time to spend with family and friends; I feel like I'm coming up short on that – the downside of preparing for the swim. On the other side, being a full-time adventurer made me come in contact and know some of the best people and friendships that I've made. It definitely enriches the relationships, but you still always feel like you need more time, like you're coming up short. So maybe at some point taking a break will be good now that things are richer with new friendships and relationships. 

When I was saying goodbye and leaving him, he started dancing and singing, and we started dancing together in the middle of a deserted road.  

Is this still a budget-friendly challenge?

This is really not a budget-friendly challenge, frankly. The logistics details of this challenge are insane; it's really far more on the expensive side. It can actually cost more than other adventures that I might do outside of Egypt. It will require some financial support to make it happen. I think I've paid my dues doing the first two challenges with a very very low-budget, so basically, I need a break. I haven't paid a lot of money in my previous adventures, so I think I'll be spending a bit here to get it done."

 

Why is financial support so vital to adventurers?

At the end of the day, it is so vital because preparing for these adventures, even if low budget, you have living expenses and money to eat and pay rent  – the basic things. You spend a lot of time preparing before actually going for the final adventure. Even the time you spend preparing ends up using a lot of resources. Something like the swim is going to cost a lot of money; without financial support that won't be possible. I need a boat and a crew for three months, a lot of tracking equipment, safety equipment – so without proper funding I'm afraid it won't be possible and I'll have to cut down on really vital things that could eventually put me in dangerous situations. Having proper financial support will actually allow me to document the adventure better and present it to people out there –– to live the experience and see, to get something good out of it, to get inspired to do something that they thought was out of reach. This is how I got inspired to do things like that and a lot of people could get inspired to do a lot of things in life, not necessarily related to adventure and physical challenges, through seeing other experiences and realizing they could reach their dreams. Documenting these experiences properly can have a very positive effect on a lot of people's lives. Even if it reaches just one person and pushes this person to follow up on a dream they have. Doing this can have a positive impact on humanity and that will be amazing. 

So having the proper financial support is vital to continue doing these things – to dream big and just go bigger. It's always nice if you have someone you can relate to, usually when I would look at the adventures in the past and people who go for an expedition I would think they are different from us –– they are foreigners in different countries, they have the means to do so and we're not equipped to do this. Then someone like Omar Samra comes along and makes things seem more doable. He's an Egyptian guy who you can relate to and he's doing those things that maybe I can do as well. You never know who might actually get inspired and go for their goals when they see someone who is relatable, doing something that they thought was out of our scope.

 

What was your favourite encounter with random strangers on the road?

"There were a lot of really nice encounters throughout my previous trips, but my all-time favorite encounter is when I was going from Shalateen to Abu Ramad. It was my first time passing through a 140 km road without a phone connection or a place to re-supply. It was a really hot day and I was looking for a tree to rest in its shade; I was so exhausted and tired, it was the most exhausted I had been in the previous 30 days of cycling. I was just craving a cup of coffee or tea instead of the warm water I had been drinking all day. Out of nowhere, I find a tree, and when I approach it I found someone else sitting there, gesturing for me to come over. Speaking to me in broken Arabic, he invited me to come to have a drink with him. We exchanged some words in broken Arabic and he kept preparing the Jabanah – that was my first time to see that drink and try it. The guy started singing in his local language while preparing the drink. We shared a drink while he was singing and humming all the time – it was so relaxing and refreshing. It turns out he was from a tribe called El Bashariyyah. I spent a good hour with him, I gave him some cheese and he asked me if I could bring him some jam on my way back. It was such a refreshing experience. When I was saying goodbye and leaving him, he started dancing and singing, and we started dancing together in the middle of a deserted road. By then the sun was setting a little bit with a cool breeze of air, I got back on my bicycle so refreshed, humming the same tune he was singing till I reached Abu Ramad.

That experience made my day tolerable and made me continue a very tough day. I didn't see that guy again when I passed by the same place on my way back, so I ended up eating the jam myself. For some time I kept wondering if that was actually true or did my mind make this up to make everything tolerable to continue the day. I guess what I wanted to say is that it was so magical. I felt like I had met my other self who lives in the desert, like another part of me was always sitting under that tree singing and chanting – it felt like I found a part of me and it made me wonder a lot.

You've cycled, ran, and swam; are there any more adventures left for you in Egypt?

There are always more adventures to do in Egypt. I already have two ideas just in my head right now and I'm ready to do them. But I'm just going to take a bit of a break from Egypt and I'll pursue other endeavours that I have in mind that are outside of the country. But definitely there are a lot of ideas in Egypt. It's really hard to run out of ideas to do in Egypt  – I have two maybe three ideas that are in mind and I'm planning to follow through with them at some point in the future.

 

What's next for you after you've completed your triathlon?

There's always the original dream that ignited all of this – doing Cairo–Cape Town with the bicycle. I've always had plans to row a body of water, so this is in the cards, but I also want to try some different conditions  – like colder weather. It'll be a whole new domain for me and I'm looking forward to learning and experiencing new things.

It's always better for me to be a beginner in some things; I think I'm stealing this quote from Alastair Humphreys, "I'm far more interested in being a beginner than in becoming an expert" I'm trying to experience more things in life, see more, and grow more. I'm looking for something different than what I already did. So not cycling, not running, and not swimming – maybe rowing or doing something in icy conditions. If that doesn't work I'll probably go back to the bicycle because I love it and I love moving with it. But definitely for now no more running or swimming.

 What's one piece of advice you would give to an aspiring adventurer who hasn't taken the leap?

The hardest thing is actually starting – that's the hardest step. After that you just live the experience, you have fun, you gain more knowledge – you just live it. Before that you feel like it's so big, you're scared of taking the first step, but it's really important so just take it. Use what you have: bicycle, hitchhike, or walk. Don't spend a lot of money, eat the cheapest things possible – foul or jam. Sleep at the cheapest places possible. And you could also save a bit here and there while you're living your day-to-day life. Use whatever gear you have; you don't have to buy any fancy things, anything will do. At the end of the day, it's the experience; it's not about how you function, it's about living the experience with whatever resources that you have.

Egypt is your playground. You don't need a permit or a visa, you don't need to buy a plane ticket. It's a vast country with a lot of diverse things you can do. You think there are barriers but there are none – so start there. If you're worried about taking three or six months off before starting your career, don't worry. Anyone who's been in a career for five or 10- years will also tell you that – it will actually broaden your horizon, it'll add a lot to you. You'll have more opportunities coming back from an adventure than before. It'll lead you to more adventures and you'll end up planning things better, knowing exactly what you need or don't need. It'll broaden your horizons and make you grow.

 

Aside from the thrill of adventure, what gets you out of bed?

What gets me out of bed beside that is curiosity, really – curiosity to know what I can do in life. I'm curious to know about many things and to know how to improve myself in many things – like how I always wanted to learn to write, to draw, play musical instruments, maybe improve my running time at a certain distance. So, always having a goal that I'm gunning for. I've always wanted to do some carpentering, some electrical work – learning some new skills and having some physical goals. Besides all that is seeing my friends, seeing the person that I love, seeing my family and spending time with them – that is always a good excuse to get out of bed. Meeting with them, having a chat, going out – all simple things that we take for granted that make getting out of bed really worth it.