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 Jeremey Murray (photo in the CLASSIC BLACK TEE (SOLD OUT) AND PERFORMANCE COMPRESSION SHORTS). 

Jeremey has had his up's and downs during his fitness journey and it is not until he discovered Parkrun that his journey has continued. Read below and find out the tough road Jeremey has taken and how honest and open about it he is. 

Where are you from?

Perth, Western Australia - born and bred in the best place in Australia (and possibly the world). 

What got you started on your health and fitness journey?

My health and fitness journey has been long and circuitous.  I have never been a ‘sporty’ person and to this day my ability to kick and throw a ball is pretty ordinary (or non-existent).

I was always what my mum called ‘big-boned’ and coupled with my lack of sporting prowess meant I was the fat kid during my school years and physically inactive for a very long time.

I have started my health kick several times with varying levels of success.  I did the Atkins Diet back in the early 2000s and dropped about 35kgs and with the help of my brother-in-law took up running (more like stumbling forward) and started to cycle to work every day.  Then life, kids and work got in the way and over the next 10 years the weight crept back on and the running stopped.  A little after I turned 50, I realised that I needed to do something to turn things around so I re-joined the gym (and actually started going), worked on my diet and started cycling more often.

With the encouragement of my sister and regular running buddy, I discovered parkrun on 1 January 2018 and completed the 5km in about 45 mins.  I became a regular parkrunner in March of 2018 and have only missed about four parkruns since then.  I currently sitting at 98 parkruns

The progress to fitness and health has seen me go from 135kg to around 92kgs (with lots of ups and downs in between).  I continue the ‘battle the bulge’ with the constant struggle between my desire to have rock-hard abdominals and my love of cake (or fried chicken)!

What is your Why?

I am not a ‘natural runner’, for me running is always tough but it feels so damn good when I stop.  The sense of achievement, the exhaustion, the challenge.   With everything that has challenged us all in 2020, I have found that running is the one thing I feel I have some level of control over.  It is my decision to go running, my decision how far I go, my decision how often.

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

I have lived with mild depression and anxiety for about the last 10 years and, if I am honest, some days it is a real struggle to get out and exercise.  There are some days when it is very hard to lace up the shoes, get on the bike or visit the gym.  The negative self-talk, the comparing myself to others, the lack of self-worth all work to get in the way.

I am a big believer in mindfulness and living in the moment which helps me to stop reflecting on the negative thoughts.  Sometimes you just got to get out there and do it, even when you don't want to.

You’ll be glad you did!

What is your favourite piece of Maw Activewear?

I love the cut and fit of the Classic Back Tee.  It’s super comfortable and fits just right for me.  And black is always so slimming!

What do you like best about the Maw Brothers Group?

I love what the MAW brand stands for as it is pretty personal to me.

The MAW Brothers Group is a real supportive and safe place where you can be confident that everyone is here to encourage and support each other on to better things.

I have met some champion fellas (virtually and in-person) through the page.

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

I think I am reasonably lucky in that I haven't really had to overcome any major adversities in my life.  I am thankful every day that I have a roof over my head, food in my belly, some money in the bank and family that love me.  Do we really need more?

2020 has been a difficult, what challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?

2020 has been total sh!t year for so many people.  The biggest challenge I have faced is losing my job in early 2020 and struggling to find work.  It is not something I thought I would face at the age of 54 years.  I am lucky I have a supportive wife and family.  The employment search continues.

What is your favourite fitness event you have undertaken?

I am really not one for entering events as I am not that keen on large crowds.  I look forward to parkrun each Saturday as it’s a fantastic community of like-minded people of all ages and abilities. 

What are your 2021 fitness goals?

I haven't set any specific fitness goals yet but I want to take up more trail running.  I was introduced to trails earlier this year and I am totally hooked.  Maybe getting a 22 minute parkrun?  But that's more a pipedream than a goal!

Thanks Jeremey for your amazing story, it is incredibly hard especially for men to open up and be able to express their feelings. As men we are taught to not show emotion or express what is going on, so with the Maw Brothers and through our community we encourage and want men to speak out, it is healthy to tell others what is going on, if you are dealing with something we encourage you to speak to a friend, our group or an organisation like beyondblue. 

We are looking forward to next month's Customer in Focus.

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