Congratulations to Robert Leach, manager of Active Nation Runcorn and this month’s local hero. Robert bravely took time out of his busy schedule as manager of Active Nation Runcorn to share his personal journey out of a life of addiction.
“I believe that regular exercise helped to save my life. I was a normal working husband and father until I made some bad choices with my life when I was around 30 years old. Before I knew it I found myself spiralling out of control into an addiction of both alcohol and cocaine. I could find no way out of this nightmare for more than 10 years. My bad choices cost me my most treasured relationships, many friendships, lead to bankruptcy and the loss of my home. But much worse was the physical and mental toll this lifestyle was taking on me. I lived in fear and I often wanted to die.
Then something happened on my 40th birthday, I’m still not sure what but I managed to find a strength and resilience that had previously deserted me. I made a choice, a choice to live again. Slowly I faced my demons and with the invaluable help of positive and kind people I met in my local gym I regained my physical and mental health. In swapping one addiction for another, the much more positive addiction of exercise, I slowly but surely built my body, my self-esteem and my life back up again. I now feel like a positive, valued member of the Active Nation community and I know that without discovering the joy of regular exercise and healthy eating I would still be lost in the darkness of addiction. Now I dedicate my time to showing others that there is always something worth living for, and to feel healthy is a gift we should treasure.”