Bred on the Gold Coast, Heath Thomas would describe himself as a very sporty kid who was happy to have a go at all the sports in his youth. Fast-forward thirty years later, including twenty spent working as a geotechnical engineer, Heath was hit by a wake-up call which led him to change his life for the better.  

“All these years, I had essentially not done any exercise, other than bodyboarding, and certainly didn’t think about what I was eating and drinking. I was overweight, pretty unhealthy and in hindsight not very happy with my life,” he admits.

“That’s when I decided to start running again and fell back in love with it.

“After completing a 10K run at the Gold Coast Marathon, I was introduced to the world of CrossFit and it just made sense to me.”

Whilst on this new journey to a healthier life, Heath became a CrossFit Level 1 trainer. But he says that was not enough for him.

“I felt I had so much more to offer to the world, so I quit my job and started a CrossFit box in my garage.”  

Citing the recent exposure from the 2018 Commonwealth Games as another catalyst; Heath decided to enrol in the Bachelor of Exercise Science at Griffith University with the aim to brings his own spin to the fitness industry.

“My background in science and engineering naturally aligns with the many concepts of understanding how our body works but also the science behind exercise and movement as a medicine. My goal is to inspire others to learn about themselves, their choices for better health and what works for them,” he explains.

Heath with his family – Left to right: before and after their transformation journey

When asked about what it’s like to be a mature student at Griffith, Heath doesn’t sugar-coat his experience yet remains positive.

“To be honest, I feel like everyone’s dad – my eldest is 25!

“I totally understand why there can be a disconnect with the younger students. Regardless, we are all there for the same reasons and it’s great to be in a community of like-minded people. I have found a few other mature aged students to connect with for support,” he adds.

His advice for adults considering taking the plunge: just do it.

“It’s very fulfilling. Having a family comes with different arrangements and commitments. It has been a challenge to juggle spending time with the kids and the family, while balancing study time, alone time and managing my financial responsibilities. Somehow, the Covid-19 restrictions has made this all easier.”

“The experience and support of the teaching staff has been phenomenal, quickly adapting to deliver the courses online. I really have nothing but praise for everyone,” he concludes.

Ready to start a future in fitness, health and performance? Study Exercise Science and Sport at Griffith University.