Here are a few stories and websites of other travelers exploring alternative transportation modes for traveling long distances.
I ran into the story of Kinga Freespirit when I was just dreaming of traveling. Her and her partner, Chopin, hitchhiked around the world. She contracted malaria in Ghana and died in 2007… but what an amazing and fulfilling life!
Christoph Rehage walked over 4500 kilometers (about 2800 miles) through China over the course of one year.
Maarten rode his motorbike around the world for 100,000 miles.
… speaking of motorbikes, of course there is Che Guevara’s famous motorbike trip around South America, documented in the Motorcycle Diaries.
I recommended overland travel in my 2nd video blog in the Enhance Your Travel Experience series. I have also met people who went overland/water from France to Indonesia (which I talked about here) and I met a guy who biked from Belgium to Bali, ferrying his bike between islands.
I hope reading some of these stories gives you some inspiration to get out there and explore the world in whichever way you choose :)