Spotlight Saturday – Shawn

Active Essex

Our Spotlight Saturday this week features Shawn Leek, or who is also known as ‘The Mental Health Runner’. A long-time runner of various distances from 5k through to ultra-running including 7 Marathons in 7 Days which he completed in 2015! Shawn is a mental health advocate as he has previously battled with his mental health and hopes to inspire others to keep looking after their mind and body.

Shawn shared his experience with us “In 2016/17 I developed problems with my mental health and lost my way, with no desire to run or exercise. My mental health issues had an enormous impact on my physical health too.

Because I didn’t want to run anymore, I decided to start up my own walking groups for free publicising it via my own Facebook page. I thought this would help me and others who may be struggling too. It soon transpired that there was a massive need for this in the community.

I noticed Community360 were looking for Colchester’s 1st Walk Motivator and I jumped at the chance and since joining them I’ve created daily walks across 6 days, plus various monthly walks too. Most of the walks are around an hour and suits all abilities.

The walks are not about speed or how far you can walk, most importantly it’s all about meeting new people, supporting and helping one another, which in turn really helps our mental and physical health. I feel so incredibly lucky to do this as a job because I get to meet wonderful people every day and most of all help to change lives from such a simple thing as walking out in the fresh air.

I inspire others through my positivity and my lived life experience around my own mental health. I can demonstrate how you can comeback stronger.

If you want to find out more about Shawn or get in touch visit his Twitter and Facebook pages here:

Twitter – Facebook