10 May Jog on
I have been reading ‘Jog on Journal’ by Bella Mackie and it has made so much sense about the body and brain function better with exercise.
It is written in a youthful style and is an honest account of the author’s battle with crippling anxiety. She extolls the virtues of running as an effective way of combatting the black dog or as I recently read depression referred to ‘the gloomies’.
In the last eight weeks, I have realised more than ever the importance of exercise to calm the frazzled mind and release our happy hormones. I had written off my running days but became determined to disprove the false story I was telling myself that I was too old and unfit to run. I dusted off my trainers, downloaded the couch to 5K app and with the narration of Jo Whiley off I went. This time I was not so hard on myself and slowly and surely and with a bit of self-back patting I am getting better and able to run (well more of a gentle jog to be honest) but I am out there and doing it!
I worry about those on the front line – the NHS staff, the teachers, the refuse collectors to name but a few who are working long shifts, staying away from their families and putting their lives at risk. They are unlikely to have the energy and opportunity to go for long walks, cycle or take part in the many online fitness challenges. How do they look after their mental health?
I hope when we listen to Boris this evening and he announces changes to the lockdown it will bring us some hope and inspiration for a fitter future.