Meet our Healthier Nation Heroes
To mark the launch of this year’s Healthier Nation Index survey, we’re excited to introduce our Healthier Nation Heroes, who are joining us on our mission to build a healthier nation.
As well as helping us to raise awareness of the findings from this year’s survey, they’ll be sharing expert advice to help us combat the health challenges we’re facing while encouraging everyone to #Find5 for the benefits of their physical and mental health.
Let us know how you’re joining in by using #Find5 on your social media channels.
Dame Kelly Holmes
“To me, #Find5 is about being in-tune with your mind and body and making conscious changes. I’m trying to actively make better decisions to benefit my mental health, whether it’s putting my phone down, focussing on breathing and meditation or moving my body for an extra five minutes.” – Dame Kelly Homes
Double Olympic Champion Dame Kelly Holmes has been in the spotlight for her physical achievements for many years. However, she admits that the benefits of physical movement are only part of the reason why she does it.
Dame Kelly has spoken openly and candidly about her experiences with mental health and the struggles that she has faced, often in private and silence due to the attention her achievements drew from the media and public.
As part of this, she has experienced first-hand, the impact physical activity has on mental fitness, and is now an advocate for raising awareness of the intrinsic link between the two. For the past year, Kelly has been supporting our #Find5 campaign and helping to raise awareness of the link between body and mind – a topic she is incredibly passionate about.
“My spinal cord injury gave me a new perspective on the role physical activity plays to support my mental health. I’ll never take it for granted, so I’m using #Find5 everyday to step away from my desk to get outside, disconnect and get some air into my lungs.” – Ed Jackson
In 2017, Ed Jackson underwent an operation to repair a fracture dislocation on his spine. Experts warned him that he may never walk again.
However, Ed's story is one that we can all draw inspiration from. His positive attitude of embracing the small wins everyday kept Ed going from strength to strength, with his ultimate goal to walk again. By applying an elite level of focus and work rate to his recovery, he managed to achieve astonishing function so soon after his severe injury.
This approach of mental fitness, combined with movement, allowed Ed to shift his goalpost. From walking meters, to miles and now peaks, he becomes an aspirational figure to those who are delivered worse-case scenarios every year, proving that they aren't always unchangeable.
Ed has partnered with us to highlight how the "small win" mentality is an achievable and attainable way for the nation to change or form healthy habits.
Nancy Odogwu AKA Fit Soul Kitchen
“#Find5 isn’t just about minutes in the day, it could be five changes you want to make or intentions to set for the week ahead.
For me, it’s swapping five ingredients in my basket for a healthy alternative, or planning five meals for the week so I can organise myself, my family and my food shop!” – Nancy Odogwu
Nancy Odogwu is a health food blogger, and founder of the Fit Soul Kitchen blog.
Having been in investment banking for over 10 years, she recently pivoted her career to become a nutritional therapist and is currently completing her postgraduate diploma at the College of Naturopathic Medicine.
Why? Because Nancy’s passion has always been to make healthy eating accessible to everyone, as well as providing health tips along the way. As a wife and mother of four, she believes in the power of food and a healthy lifestyle - helping others to develop a more mindful relationship with food, whilst maintaining a fully nourished and well-balanced diet.
Nancy is working with us to raise awareness of the simple and easy ways to incorporate a healthy diet into any lifestyle, with everyday ingredients that can be found in the supermarket or, more often than not, the average fridge or cupboard.
Amy Lane AKA Wellness Ed
“Movement should never be seen as something you feel you HAVE to do, it should be something you want to do. The best way to make this mindset shift is by making it work for you, which is where #Find5 comes in, it’s about finding 5 minutes, changes or aims that help you hit your personal goals.” – Amy Lane
Author, podcaster, editor, qualified fitness expert, runner, parent – Amy Lane is no stranger to a busy lifestyle.
Having spent over 12 years in the health and fitness industry (you may recognise her as the former Executive Editor of digital at Women’s Health UK), Amy has a lot of experience in adapting physical activity with anything life throws at her.
More recently, after becoming a mum of two, Amy has had to adapt her lifestyle to incorporate new routines and responsibilities - and is familiar with the mental and physical tolls it can take on a person.
She is passionate about inspiring women everywhere to fall in love with fitness, for improved mental and physical health. We’re excited to be working with her to help raise further awareness for women’s health, as well as the benefits of physical activity for everyone.