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Man ditches office for 30 days of adventure

STEVEN CHUA, 24 HOURS
Marc Smith feeds beluga whales on his first adventure. (GUS FOSAROLLI PHOTO)

Marc Smith feeds beluga whales on his first adventure. (GUS FOSAROLLI PHOTO)

Bored with the daily grind, Vancouver's Marc Smith abandoned the office and embarked on a month-long local adventure challenge aimed at shaking up his life.

For the past 27 days, the 43-year-old event planner has ditched his desk for a nearly completed "career cleanse."

"It's about overcoming challenges that we create for ourselves, and breaking out of old habits," said Smith, who's blogged about his experience and hopes others will be inspired to do the same.

The adventure idea took root in May, when Smith decided he wanted to "get out and shake his life up and have fun."

But he didn't know where to start. He did, however, know where to look for advice.

As a social media specialist, Smith has amassed more than 5,300 followers on Twitter. He asked what he should do, and the dialogue was catalyst for his 30-day adventure program.

From the suggestions, Smith put together "a combination of a bucket list and a tourist itinerary for Vancouver," vowing to do them all in 30 days, starting June 1.

From hand-feeding beluga whales to admiring the scenic beauty of the Lower Mainland from a helicopter, Smith's been packing his life with new and exciting things to do, while bringing along many of his audience members. He even did a day as a scorekeeper at a Vancouver Canadians home game.

"A lot of the activities I've done, I've done with the people who gave me the suggestions . it's just as much about community building," Smith shared.

Along the way, Smith's also managed to conquer a few fears. He made his first attempt at the Grouse Grind during his adventure program.

"I did 50% of the Grouse Grind (and realized) every time I'm fearful, if I just say yes and do it. When the experience is over, I have such a great sense of accomplishment regardless of whether I could complete it."

When asked what his plans are once the 30 days are over, he said, " . the real adventure begins on July 2 when I take all this and make this the new normal."

Smith hasn't decided how he'll complete his adventure - which ends Saturday - and wants 24 Hours readers to make suggestions. He's hoping to complete the task with the reader who gives the winning idea.

Tweet Smith @Amuse_events with the hashtag #30DayAdventures.

Smith updates his progress on 30dayadventures.ca. His final post will be on Canada Day.