Some solid cheese from me and JEEP to break the ice!
So…Once upon a time, I worked behind a desk for 15 years. Took a shed load off drugs and drank even more booze, before things got to crisis point and I realised I needed to move in a new direction. Enter my first date with movement. I Found hiking and began to understand the power of putting one foot in front of the other. Let go of my sins halfway up a mountain, well, more like a hill in Guildford and began to move forward out of the darker days.
Hiking turned into running, through running I found a Community (RunDemCrew), and through Community I found recovery. From recovery came self-belief, and because of that, I decided to leave my career behind and retrain as a Personal Trainer and Run Coach in 2015. I built my Community of misfits, called the ChasingLights Collective, the original Mindful Running Crew, alongside developing a successful Coaching business and becoming a brand Ambassador for lululemon.
Twelve months into change and I got a call from the BBC. I was as shocked as you are! They asked me to be on a primetime documentary to Coach 10 people with various mental health conditions to run the London Marathon in 2017, in partnership with Heads Together and the Royal Family. 6 months of hard work, 120 hours of filming and 2 award-winning episodes later, the legacy of the most beautiful project I have ever been part of was aired to the nation. “Mind over Marathon.”
As great as life was, the story behind the scenes was a different narrative to the one aired on TV and Social Media. As the closing credits of the second episode rolled, and the world was telling me how proud they were, I took my first anti-depressant pill. The dark clouds of the person I had been running from had caught up, along with the stress of changing career, building a new business and finding myself working on such a massive TV show. In 2017 I found myself on yet another road to recovery, and my head on battle with Anxiety and Depression began. The road leading away from medication was one of educating myself around how Physiology affects our Psychology and turning the tide on the Chronic Stress my mind and body had endured. Like a lot of us, I had become an expert at suffering.
Through managing my own Mental Health I began to forge my career as a Public Speaker, Human Performance Coach, Strategy & Brand Ambassador for ASICS and Mental Health Campaigner for CALM. Working with individuals and organisations to help them understand how to manage their physical and mental wellbeing through movement, evolutionary tools, performance coaching, lifestyle choices and accountability. Partners have included Spotify, BNP Paribas, Deloitte, Standard Bank, Kings University, CAA, Eton College, Mindshare, Weber Shandwick, HAVAS, Soho House, JEEP, Squaremile Magazine, Evening Standard, BBC, SKY NEWS, Sainsburys and Argos