Today on the podcast:

Fergus is a Hybrid Athlete who recently completed the 1200TWELVE which consisted of a 1200lb powerlifting total and sub 12 hour Ironman distance triathlon in the same day!

Having competed in a variety of sports from a young age, Fergus has spent his life in pursuit of athletic performance.

He shared his experience with mental health and a suicide attempt, publicly in 2018, and has since used his athletic pursuits as a channel to raise funds and awareness for this cause, and has raised almost £100,000 for Movember through a variety of strength and endurance challenges.

Notes for the 1200TWELVE for anyone unfamiliar with powerlifting or iron distance triathlon:
Powerlifting lifts: squat, deadlift and bench 2.4 mile swim (3.9K), 112 mile bike (180.2K), and 26.2 mile run (42.2K).

Episode Outline

  • 04:20 His background into fitness and changing training direction when he lost his enthusiasm for powerlifting
  • 13:10 Training and living as a hybrid athlete
  • 15:22 His hardest and craziest challenges over the years
  • 24:23 His history with depression and his suicide attempt in 2016
  • 35:18 Early signs that your mental health is deteriorating and knowing what makes you tick to come through it
  • 43:44 The power of having open, honest conversations and finding what makes you happy
  • 53:30 Fergus’s advice to his 18-year-old self

Key Points

  • So many people stop the things that they enjoy because of the fear that it might inhibit them in some other way; when in reality you just have to consider things a bit differently and be a bit more analytical with it and understand that you’re not going to be absolutely optimal across all disciplines. But that doesn’t really matter unless you’re aiming to be top of your game in them.
  • Depression isn’t a rational state of mind. But as a society, we so often try to break down and understand issues so that we can prescribe cure-all solutions. If only it were that simple. We need to look at depression from the bottom-up rather than from the top-down. That is, if somebody is depressed, it’s best not to work backwards, but instead to work forwards by asking who they are as a person. By understanding what somebody lacks and discovering how to fill those holes, a lot can be done to fight off depression. It may not be a panacea, but it’s a far healthier way to go about addressing this crucial societal problem.
  • The keys to improving your mental health are to know what makes you tick and what makes you happy as well as having open, honest conversations if you feel as if that happiness has been lacking. Self-awareness is king, and as long as you’re willing to face yourself everyday, warts and all, you’ll be able to nip (for the most part) stress or even depression in the bud.

Powerful Quotes by Fergus

  • All I aim to encourage people with what I’m doing is to broaden their training horizon and to use training as a healthy outlet for what they enjoy rather than it seeming like they’re stuck in this one way of doing things and they can never break out of it, because I’ve been there before.
  • I wasn’t unique at all. I was just another human being whose sense of fulfillment wasn’t being met and I wasn’t in the right environment. My mistake was not realizing that there were things that I could do to improve that, one of which was talking to those around me.
  • Setting a plan is great. Setting these ambitions are great. But the roadmap is always going to be changing. Rolling with the punches and adapting as you go is where the real value lies.
  • Sharing how you feel with people openly and honestly does not make you any weaker. It actually makes you much stronger because it allows you to be much more empathetic and much more considerate around people around you. The more self-aware you are, the more resilient you can become.
  • The only person that can determine what makes you, you, is you.

Guest Info

Fergus Crawley

Fergus is a Hybrid Athlete who recently completed the 1200TWELVE which consisted of a 1200lb powerlifting total and sub 12-hour Ironman distance triathlon in the same day! Having competed in a variety of sports from a young age, Fergus has spent his life in pursuit of athletic performance.

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