Maria Mander

Maria Mander, Founder of Mander Wellbeing, is an experienced workplace Wellbeing Consultant providing strategic direction to organisations to create a culture of wellness and increase performance for success. Her insights are regularly seen through her writing, podcasts and speaking engagements.

With wellbeing at the centre of all she does, it is no surprise that Maria “loves” Freshwalks. Fuelled by a passion for looking after mental and physical wellbeing, Maria can often be seen heading to the hills, no matter the weather!

If you’d like to get to know Maria a little bit better, catch her on one of our walks or visit her LinkedIn profile here.

Tell us about your first Freshwalks.

My first Freshwalks was in Edale. I felt very welcomed by everyone. It was a tough one as it rained but it was exhilarating! I certainly enjoyed a well earned glass of wine at the pub at the end of the walk.

How many have you attended?

I have lost count, but my aim was to attend one a month.

Why do you come back?

Being self employed, it is great to be part of a supportive, friendly community in Manchester, to network in a relaxed setting, share ideas, ask for advice, plus you get to do a fabulous walk in the countryside and invest in your own wellbeing at the same time.

What’s your favourite route?

I don’t think I have tried them all yet to have a favourite!  I actually enjoy the variety and walking where I have never been before, plus a new challenge.

The something you always bring?

Plenty of snacks to keep up my energy levels. The supply of jelly babies from the group is always a welcome treat!  I bring plenty of layers and waterproofs.

What's your favourite Freshwalks memory?

The sunset walk because I love watching the sunset.

How has Freshwalks helped your business?

By being part of a supportive community, having quality conversations, learning from fellow leaders, being referred and providing leads.

Recommend three people you have met on Freshwalks.

I have met so many amazing people it is really hard to pick 3!  On my first walk, I felt very welcomed by John Shinnick, Ian Hutchings and Alastair Jones, who have provided support, advice and plenty of laughs ever since.

How does Freshwalks challenge typical networking formats?

It is a far more relaxed and enjoyable setting being outdoors in nature to network.  Walking gives you the time to build genuine relationships with people too. As well as the regulars, there are always new people to speak to from across a wide range of sectors.

Freshwalks is a combination of exercise, networking, sharing knowledge and thinking time. How do you balance those components?

This naturally happens during the course of the walk. It always seems to flow.

I ensure I talk to everyone in the group as I always learn from people I meet. There is always lots of laughter too. Walking in nature is always a good way to switch off.

Suggest one new place for us to go.

I’d like to see more coastal walks!

Sum up Freshwalks in three words

Connection, wellness, fun.

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