Once a month we will be featuring one of our customers in an email about their health and fitness journey and life in general. This month we are featuring Gavin Williams (photo in the PERFORMANCE TEE & PERFORMANCE COMPRESSION SHORTS). 

From toxic lifestyle to discovering health and fitness, Gavin found running and absolutely loves it and in recent times has discovered trails, his new love, please read below his raw and emotional story: 

Where are you from?

Born and raised in NSW, I than spent the majority of my adult life living overseas and now I’ve been calling Brisbane home for the past 5 years.

What got you started on your health and fitness journey?

After working for over 20 years within an industry that demanded high pressure work, long irregular hours and a toxic environment that often led to poor social life decisions both physically and mentally, I knew within myself that I it was time to make some healthy life changing decisions in order to alleviate the stress and anxiety that had slowly been creeping up on me.

I quit my job, took 3 months off and removed myself from all my “bad habits” and leapt into the world of running without thinking too much about it.

That was just over 3 years ago now and I can happily say it was one of the greatest decisions of my life…I just wish I had taken this direction many years earlier, but as they say “better late than never”.

What are you daily habits that allow you to exercise and stay on track?

I soon realized that for me to keep on track with this newfound obsession something had to give. I couldn’t return to a job that wouldn’t allow me the freedom to run. Therefore, I had to decide what was more important…my bank balance or my mental balance?

My current job (before Covid -19 struck) allows me to keep on track, I have plenty of time every single day to run and start my day on a positive note before heading into work. I will never again allow my work life to affect my mental health. My choice to change my work/life balance allows me to stay accountable and to stay on track.  

What are your health and fitness goals for 2020?

At the beginning of 2020 I had a pretty epic goal in mind but unfortunately this goal has had to be put on hold due to the world’s current environment.

My running life is all about the Trails (my newfound love) and I had planned to run at least one official trail event in every State and Territory in Australia in 2020, but this goal is now unlikely to occur. I still have a few events that may still go ahead later in the year but only time will tell (fingers crossed).

So, for now my goals are to continue to run the trails as much as possible, to inspire others through my running and to be present within my running community in order to provide advice, support and a lending ear and hug when needed.

But most importantly…to be grateful for every single run I am able to run, even the hard ones.

What do you think if the Maw Active gear?

As a runner I have always preferred wearing a singlet and it wasn’t until I became aware of Maw that I took the plunge and purchased the Maw Performance Tee. That Tee is now by far my favorite top to wear while working out. I have since purchased many other items and I am always highly impressed with the quality, comfort and uniqueness of all the gear.

Who has been your biggest influence on your health and fitness journey and why?  

To be completely honest…it’s the everyday people who are just chasing their dreams and ambitions through running that truly inspire me.

I use my Instagram profile (mindthegav) to hopefully inspire others and bring some form of joy into people’s lives by simply seeing what I get up to out there on the roads and trails. The professional runners don’t inspire me, the numbers, the times, the paces, they bore me. I want to see someone who has a story to tell, a journey that has been an uphill battle, I want to see Mr/Ms average smash their goals, I want to see them out there getting it done against all adversity, I want to see the pride on their faces as they smash their own personal goals, whatever they may be. They are the one who inspire me. My running tribe inspire me.

What adversity have you had to overcome to get to where you are?

I have to work hard to push past the demons of self-doubt, not trusting in my own abilities and sometimes even questioning why I run.

I watched my Dad run his entire life, my Dad was a natural runner, a gifted runner, a champion in my eyes but I wasn’t blessed with his running genes.

I have had to teach myself to stop comparing myself to others. I’m at best a “middle of the pack” runner and at times a “back of the pack” runner, yet it doesn’t matter. I’m never going to stand on that podium, I’m never going to win Gold for Australia, I’m never going to break world records but I will always continue to take pride in every race I enter knowing that I am simply doing the best I can do on that day.

We have to remember that we are all running our own races. Stop comparing.

What has been your greatest achievement to date?

Looking back, I have to say my greatest achievement to date would have to be my very first half marathon. It was an event I had been working towards from the moment I decided to take up this sport. For the first time since school I felt like I had finally committed 100% of myself to something. There were many struggles, doubts and injuries along the way (those damn calf muscles) but I am still to this day amazed by the sheer amount of determination and grit I had put in to accomplish my first proper goal.

That first Half Marathon and the many months leading up to it taught me so much about what I am capable of and proved that we as human beings are all capable of much more than we truly believe we are.

Set your mind to something, work every day towards it and you too can achieve amazing things.

What is your favourite fitness event you have undertaken?

With a single doubt the day I decided to race my first trail event changed everything for me.

I had fallen out of love with “road running” after the Gold Coast Half of 2019. That race was brutal, it hurt on so many different levels, both physically and mentally.

After a 2-month absence my mate dragged me to Lake Manchester for a 10km trail event…the rest is history. Never in my life have I ever felt so at home.

Thank you Gav, you're always showing inspiration to others, your very honest, funny and lighthearted stories on Instagram show how much love and zest you have for running. You're also an amazing part of the Maw Brothers, thank you for been part of the group. 

We can't wait to bring you next Month's customer in focus. 

1 comment

  • Leah

    This story brought tears to my eyes. Gavin was one of the first runners I connected with when I finally decided to begin sharing my running goals and passion with other people. I’m so lucky I found him, he has been so supportive and truly a wonderful friend. Thank you MAW Active for profiling such an awesome bloke. Leah x

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