Organic Runner Mom

Running and Depression

“What people never understand is that depression isn’t about the outside; it’s about the inside.”

It is very easy when you are depressed to mask those feelings and to put on a happy face. It is much easier to hide than to let out your true feelings.

I have become a master of disguise in masking my depression over the years. I think it surprises many people when they hear that I deal with depression. Also when they find out that I had a severe bout of depression that ended with me in the hospital people wonder how I ended up with things going that far.

This is why it is so important to check in on loved ones and friends because you never know what can be hidden behind those smiles.

Depression isn’t selective. It can happen to anyone. You don’t have to come from a certain background to suffer from depression. It can start up when you least expect it and it can be debilitating.

In order to cope with the symptoms of depression I work very hard to get myself up and going. Some days this is easy but other days this can be very hard and it feels like darkness is around every corner. I work hard to smile and “be happy” although some days this seems like an impossibility.

Running can be very helpful with the symptoms of depression? Read more to find out how it helps me. #running #depression #mentalhealth

One of my biggest coping mechanisms for dealing with depression is to go for a run. The endorphins and getting out into nature can be enough to lift me up and out of the darkness. When you are depressed it can be hard not get overwhelmed by daily life-

 “When we’re overwhelmed with anxiety and depression, shifting from the big picture—all the frustrations, worst-case scenario thinking—to the small, in-the-moment task of doing something that approaches a goal, like running a four-mile loop with two hills, will kick off a positive feedback loop that continues throughout the run and takes our thinking and emotions out of the trench of negativity,” says Laura Fredendall, Psy.D.

I love this approach to flipping your thinking by using running to get a positive feedback loop going in your mind. When you are depressed catastrophic dark thinking can become the norm. For every run that I go on I always have a goal or goals in mind whether it be the goal of just going out for any easy run or goals for completing a speed workout or hill workout. After a run my mind always feels much clearer and I am able to give my thinking a jumpstart away from getting too focused on the negatives.

Running also benefits you because according to webMD it helps by “Releasing feel-good endorphins, natural cannabis-like brain chemicals (endogenous cannabinoids) and other natural brain chemicals that can enhance your sense of well-being.” Are you able to run to get that runner’s high? It can definitely help to improve mood. After I run my mood always feels lifted.

Do you run to help with depression? How does it help you?

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7 responses

7 responses

  1. I really appreciate how open you’ve been about your struggle with depression. I think it’s awesome that going for a run can really help with this. Running does help me when I’m feeling very anxious because I’m able to switch off my brain, even if it’s only for 30 minutes.

  2. I relate all too well with this. And I admit it’s not going super great. I can’t run and it’s my therapy. So I have to do other things but I am struggling with motivation to do so. It’s a vicious cycle. I have to just take it day by day.

  3. Depression and anxiety are the reasons I started running! Thank goodness for running. It has helped me through some really tough times. Running isn’t the complete solution tho. But it sure helps. I’m grateful to you for sharing your story. So many of us have been there and still struggle.
    Wendy recently posted…Scary RunfessionsMy Profile

  4. I definitely run to help my anxiety. It can be so overwhelming sometimes, and getting out in the air and working up a good sweat can absolutely change things around for me.

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