An East Budleigh man is about to take on a historic physical challenge to raise awareness of men’s mental health.

Isaac Kenyon, 29, will carry out a gruelling Ironman triathlon (swim, cycle and run) wearing a 15kg weighted vest.

The weight will symbolise the burden of mental health problems that many men struggle with, which Isaac has experienced himself.

By the same token, the incredible strength and resilience he will draw upon during the challenge represent the mental resources men can develop to overcome feelings of anxiety and despair.

Exmouth Journal: Isaac cycling

Isaac is an eco-adventurer and a trailblazer in the world of endurance adventure sports. He is the founder of Climate Explorers, a Community Interest Company on a mission to highlight climate solutions.

But he has also struggled with anxiety, feelings of disconnect and even moments of suicidal despair, which he was initially reluctant to talk about for fear of appearing weak.

He is passionate about inspiring other men to open up about mental health issues to remove the weight from their lives.

He said: "I believe mental fitness to be a form of training much like physical fitness, which can help everyday people to become more resilient and develop tools and coping strategies to deal with difficult periods of mental health, and awareness around this subject can help reduce the stigma around mental health."

Exmouth Journal: Isaac Kenyon training in the sea

His Ironman ‘journey’ will start in North Devon on Sunday, September 10 - World Suicide Prevention Day - and will consist of a 2.4 mile swim (3.9 kilometres), a 112-mile cycle ride (180.2 kilometres) and a 26.2-mile run (42.2 kilometres). It’s thought no-one has ever completed this supreme feat of endurance while carrying weights.

Isaac said: “Wearing a 15kg weighted vest during the Ironman isn't just about conquering a physical challenge; it's a powerful metaphor for the burdens of mental health struggles.

"With every step, I carry the weight of those who battle anxiety, depression, and thoughts of despair.

“This journey isn't just mine—it's a shared testament of resilience, empathy, and the hope that through open conversations, we can alleviate the hidden weights many carry. By embracing this symbolic challenge, I'm dedicated to shedding light on mental health causes, inspiring understanding, and proving that together, we can overcome even the heaviest of burdens."

Isaac is making a short film called Weighed Down about his Ironman project and the story behind it. He is also raising money for the mental health charity Mind, for which he is a trustee. For more information visit his GoFundMe page.