“Never judge a man (or woman)
until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.”
Or, in Amanda Allen’s case, until you have run 1000km solo to fight your own black dog.
She ran 31km per day, for 32 days, from Toowoomba to Mackay. Along some very long, straight, hot, seemingly never-ending highways through some very bleak, dry and dusty land. And she did it to raise awareness for suicide and mental illness.
“Facing my fears and doubts, wanting to give up but taking another step anyway, fearing I might not make it, that I might not be good enough to finish; this symbolised what living with depression has always felt like to me.
“There is a way through the blackness, there is no shame in being human, in being sensitive, in suffering; healing it isn’t an easy journey, but it is possible, and it is absolutely worth it. You are not alone,” Amanda said.
Amanda is the epitome of physical strength. She is a rare breed of individual; bringing together decades of high level sporting achievements, including numerous triathlon, cycling, canoeing championship titles, then challenging herself further as a master’s athlete, taking out the Crossfit Games World Championship Titles, twice!
It’s hard to fathom, that this extraordinary woman who has achieved in life what many dream about, has suffered from suicidal depression and self-doubt.
“Overcoming long-term suicidal depression and chronic alcoholism and releasing myself from the terrible fear, doubt and self-sabotage that underlies these issues, has been my greatest challenge,” Amanda said.
Although discovering Crossfit by accident, it transformed her life, gifted her empowerment, a tribe to belong to and made her stronger physically, emotionally and mentally. As owner of CrossFit Byron Bay, she delivers a level of passion like no other.
“Crossfit is a community of people striving to be better versions of themselves every day. We lift heavy things, jump, run, skip and even fly through the air together. It is for everyone, no matter what age, stage or ability; the Queen, your unfit grandfather, a world champion, a teenager and a mum can all train together and support one another in the same class; everything is scalable! “Crossfit is without doubt the most fun you can have inside four walls. The energy is ridiculously fun, supportive, happy and uplifting. It is medicine for the body, mind and soul.”
For a wealth of information and inspiration to take your own step toward smashing your fitness goals, visit amandacrossfitallen.com. Here you will find Amanda’s four books detailing her raw accounts of sobriety and success, as well as information about Amanda’s Women’s Wellbeing Retreats and her lifestyle and nutrition coaching.
Q&A WITH AMANDA
FOR A WOMAN WHO INSPIRES SO MANY, WHO INSPIRES YOU?
“I am inspired by people willing to work for a better tomorrow, for themselves and their tribe. By those striving despite the odds and the depths of difficulty, to overcome their personal doubts and weaknesses.”
HOW DID YOU ORIGINALLY DISCOVER CROSSFIT?
“I discovered Crossfit by accident, I was trying to make the Olympic team for High Kneeling Canoeing and that lead me to exploring options for building my strength and high intensity fitness.”
WHAT IS SOMETHING THAT YOUR
FRIENDS WOULD CONSIDER ‘SO YOU?’
“Unicorns. Laughter. Puppy kisses. Gritty honesty no matter what.”
TELL US ABOUT YOUR TATTOOS?
“I have tattoos of my puppies actual paw prints (I love them with my whole heart and soul), a tattoo of unicorn (I believe in magic), and tattoos of the words Freedom, Dream, Grace.”