What is CycleInstead?
CycleInstead is about bicycle touring, bike maintenance and everything else to do with helping people get on bikes. One particular project is a 15,000 kilometre journey from Thailand to Scotland by bicycle and the website is where the details and honest accounts of the bike tour will be recorded and posted. I intend to raise money for The Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH), and raise awareness of mental health issues and suicide prevention. This project is 100% self funded.
Explore the landscape, explore the options; encouraging awareness of suicide prevention through an epic bike tour from Chiang Mai to Edinburgh.
Let’s move forward, one revolution at a time.
Background information and the reason:
This all started as a light-hearted rebellion to the modern day, mindless culture of button clicking-flight-booking-internet travel.
“I can just cycle home instead,” I cheekily boasted amongst friends one night.
Then the thought just would not leave me alone.
How could I possibly justify something this radical? Where would I find the time? The money? Suddenly the honesty and rawness of the past motivated me in a way that quite positively took over.
After two years of trying to come to terms with mood swings, low self-esteem and a darkness that I couldn’t put my finger on, I realised that I was depressed—something I thought I would never encounter. The one thing that opened the door, the one thought that lightened my heaviness and kept me motivated to look towards the future, was this idea of an epic journey home by bicycle. However unreachable it seemed, I knew focusing on this single goal was a way to lift myself out of the self-doubting mentality that had begun to occupy so many of my days.
I decided to cycle from Chiang Mai, Thailand to Edinburgh, Scotland.
Having personally lived with depression and after recently losing a very close friend to suicide, the choice to raise awareness of, and money for, a suicide prevention charity was a natural one. I do not know anyone who has not had their lives affected by suicide, and I am certain that everyone wishes there was a wider range of help, support and alternatives for those plagued by mental health issues.
Through this bicycle tour, I aim to spread a simple message; no matter how difficult our life situation is, there are always other options to explore. For me, the option to cycle instead will lead me across 18 countries, 2 continents and a world of adventure. I hope you will follow me on this six-month journey and support the concept of exploring the options. Together we can move forward, one step closer to a healthy mental, emotional and physical state. One pedal revolution at a time.