Reflecting on past entries is a wonderful thing.
It also seems I do this best when I am full of cold and about to throw myself a bit of a pity party, especially as I currently sound like some weird nasally thing on videos I am doing for some online clients.
The whole purpose of this blog is to document the ups and downs of an average person who just so happened to qualify as a Personal Trainer. It is a diary of the everyday mundane, the constant battle to make sense of our place in this ever frustrating world, to understand what it is to be human. Oh yes, as ell as give you some tips and information about, you know, fitness and the like.
Yes, it will probably get a little existential on occasion and most definitely have some whinging, most likely have the odd profanity, but that’s OK. This is my blog so it does kind of reflect me somewhat.
Reading through past entries, I have suffered some serious low points of late, even a depressive episode, and an awful lot (if not all), of them can be related to stress. I don’t deal well with it, yet I seem to court it like some love sick puppy. I am my own worst drama llama. These last few months have been no exception with the closing of the studio and the continued hunt for full time employment.
I’ve also noticed that in the last 24 months I have had some lovely revelations surrounding my attitude to others and their consistent commentary on me. This is partly my fault for wearing my heart on my sleeve and being an open book to many (something I’m working on changing). I often give people too much information about things and they then hang me out to dry. Finally at 42, I am realising that there is a very deliberate reason my circle of very close friends has diminished.
It was quite the eye opener today, reading through past blog entries, looking at those things I had written and realising how cathartic writing is for me. I should endeavour to do it far more than I do. A dear friend had asked for a link to my blog to look at exercise and mental health. I noticed as I read through the entries, that while I don’t specifically go into the science behind why exercise is SO good for your mental health, an awful lot of my blogs relate my real time experience to it.
For example, this past fortnight I have looked at my beloved kettlebells and barbell and felt despondent at the thought of lifting them. I have done some small movements, mainly low weight Turkish get ups and some single swings, but otherwise they’ve sat on the studio floor looking rather forlorn and wondering why I have forsaken them. Sometimes, we can push ourselves too hard and the thing we love that gives us that mental clarity can become a burden. Instead, I have opted for long walks. I am blessed in that I live in a forest which also happens to be 5 miles from the seafront. It’s why where I live has so much damned rain – hello to our very own cloud factory micro climate.
It may not give me the same strong feeling I get as when I lift but walking the 5km round trip to your local co-op and back certainly helps clear the mind and allows you to stop wondering about work/home life/friends/family/social media and everything that is currently stressing you out. Sometimes we just need to get outside and get some air. For me the science behind movement and its great effect on mental health isn’t as important as experiencing it. Of course I know the science behind it, it’s my job (or at least it still is for the time being), but the actual real time experience of noticing in my blogs that when I talk about these revelations, that show some mental clarity, some new insight into my own maladies and some respite from these low spells, I noticed that just the act of getting outside in the fresh air is the one thing that makes the difference. Whether it is a run, a bike ride or just a walk, it is the act of putting the appropriate clothing on and getting out in to the fresh air that has the greatest effect. Some days that’s all you can muster, and that’s absolutely fine.
Yes lifting also has an affect on me mentally and physically but there are days that just walking is more than enough and we should not be quick to dismiss the simple act of a good walk. It’s what I recommend for my clients when they are going through a tough time. Schedule 15-20 mins a day where you can just put your boots on and go for a walk. It is amazing how much that simple act can make all the difference to your mood and the rest of your day.
The reason this entry is titles, ‘Oh, hello You…’ is because for the first time in about 6 months I have felt a little more like my old self. I’m allowing a little of my weird crazy to come back into my everyday. Why do I always feel I have to temper my personality? It’s bonkers!! I know I’m not everyone’s cup of tea and that is perfectly fine…not everyone is my cup of tea either. I know I am an emotional, sentimental old soul and for many my openness in how I truly feel is off putting and totally ‘not British’. That’s fine too. I am me, and I’m rather awesome. 😃
This past 12 years since I started this crazy journey, has been one hell of an experience. Having run my business for the last 7 years has had such a profound impact on my life that it shouldn’t be just seen as one major stress. It has had it’s most joyous moments, I have gained some amazing knowledge, I have met some truly wonderful people through fitness and I have learned so much about me that I know I am far from done with who I am and what I want to experience in this life.
And yes, when the mental stuff gets too taxing I will ring my amazing therapist and book in for a chat so I can look at the problem and understand it better with the aid of someone who isn’t going to judge that wonderful and weird crazy that is me.
A heartfelt thank you to everyone who messaged this past three weeks checking if I was OK after reading the last couple of entries. Yes, it was a very low point but sometimes rock bottom is a great educator. While I am often open and bare my vulnerabilities, I am also a tough cookie and as previously stated giving up doesn’t compute for me. It is never an option.
I’m going to close with a quote from the wonderful Elizabeth Taylor. To be fair she really did live life her way and what a life it was!
As always, be kind to yourself, you rock!! Kxx