Seize Your Adventure is a podcast that uses the power of adventure to spread epilepsy awareness. As the only platform dedicated to people with epilepsy telling their own stories of adventurous living, it is changing the narrative of both communities. Episodes are a mix of creative non-fiction stories told by a person with epilepsy, and conversations with guests. The stories are produced to place people in the adventure and imagine living the adventure life. The interviews are a chance to learn more about the guests’ love of their sport, but also the challenges and accommodations of living with epilepsy. Interviews are mainly with those who live with epilepsy and have ownership over their condition, but also with activity providers who support access within their own sport.
Epilepsy affects everyone differently, and everyone with epilepsy will have a different definition of ‘adventure’. Some of us take on challenges beyond most people in full health, whilst for others there is nothing small about a microadventure. We might climb walls weeks after brain surgery, run between regular seizures or cross countries with the medicine to stop symptoms in our bag. Having epilepsy means that there are always extra considerations – but it would be the same if we stayed at home! We believe that with the necessary precautions and the right encouragement, adventure awaits for us all.
On a post-referendum quest to discover more of Europe, I decided to take a five-hundred mile walk across Spain. In the summer of 2017, I finished my contract as a Content Editor and set out to walk the Camino de Santiago. I expected sore feet, time to think and intimate talks with strangers (mainly about blisters). I didn’t expect my epilepsy to be such a focus of conversation and source of admiration. Speaking about epilepsy with people from around the world, most of whom knew little about the condition, I saw that lack of awareness is a universal problem.
When I returned to the UK, I found myself contacted by people with epilepsy who had taken on similar challenges, and those who had never considered that adventure could be possible for them. I was surprised that nobody else was telling these epilepsy adventure stories. So I decided to.
Fran Turauskis, Producer and Host of Seize Your Adventure
A conqueror of the Camino de Santiago, Fran’s love for hiking can be traced back to family holidays in wet Wales. Running and climbing are new additions to her lifestyle. Produce and Host of Seize Your Adventure, Fran’s indoor alter-ego is a writer who works in the local library.
Last seizure: April 2015 (tonic-clonic)
Hiking hobbyist Joe is a member of Manchester and District Walkers (MAD Walkers). He trekked Ben Nevis for charity and has hopes for bigger mountains in the future. He runs a blog (epilepticman.com) and wants to help end discrimination against all invisible disabilities.
Last seizure: Monthly (tonic-clonic)
(Ketogenic Epilepsy Warrior)
Jade aka @thetraininsideme has been practising a ketogenic lifestyle for over two years. She enjoys stand-up paddle boarding, yoga, hiking and swimming. When she isn’t being active, she helps others to find their optimal self through massage, lifestyle coaching and motivational speaking.
Last seizure: August 2019
Christalle Bodiford is an artist, advocate, writer, and adventure seeker. When she’s not writing or advocating, Christalle enjoys puppy snuggles with her scruffy terrier and outdoor adventures with her husband. She is the Austin Ambassador for Outdoor Mindset.
Last seizure: February 2019 (aura & tonic-clonic)
Born and raised outside of Boulder Colorado, Kyle’s favourite pastimes are snowboarding and climbing: adventures where he can do both take the cake. His motto is to S.L.E.D. or ‘Simply Live Each Day’ and he’s currently training to be on American Ninja Warrior.
Last seizure: August 2017 (tonic-clonic)
Jared is the Social Media Producer for Patagonia. When he’s not at his desk you can find him out in the ocean surfing or reading literature written from typewriters. Jared’s three greatest loves are his wife, his family and the San Francisco Giants.
Last Seizure: February 2018 (tonic-clonic)
Jake Quigley is the executive director of the non profit Outdoor Mindset which helps people with neurological challenges to embrace the power of the outdoor. When he is not working, Jake can be found adventuring outdoors with his wife, Jeanie, by foot, bike, or ski.
Last seizure: 2009
Amanda Plomp is a runner with epilepsy from Canada. She started having seizures in her teens and discovering running in her twenties helped Amanda to feel strong and connected to her body. She blogs about both on her website Tremors of My World.
Last seizure: Regular (tonic-clonic & myoclonic)
Our Own Challenges
Our Own Challenges
To celebrate turning 30 in 2019, Fran will be taking on 30 different adventure challenges she has never done before. These will range from trying popular adventure activities for the first time (such as stand-up paddleboarding) to physical challenges (including the 100KM Race to the Stones event) and out-of-the-box suggestions such as bog snorkelling! Each adventure will push her out of her comfort-zone.
More importantly, this will give Fran the chance to work with adventure sports providers to discuss what stops people with epilepsy trying their sport, and to break down the misconceptions surrounding epilepsy.
In the UK, 1 in 100 people have epilepsy. and 87 people are diagnosed every day. To highlight this fact, Fran will be inviting 87 people with epilepsy, or someone close to them, to join in the adventures. This will encourage others with the condition to find their own adventures and it will show the wide range of people affected by the condition. By working with these individuals and companies, adventure sports will become more accessible for those with epilepsy who never considered it could be for them.
If you are an adventure sports provider or you would like to join in a challenge, head to Fran’s website to find out more!