Over the years I’ve blatted on, and on, and on about several things, a few simple rules for living well and living with my mental health/depression problems:
- Just show up, and DO it
- Consistent effort
- Regular, hard exercise
- Manage stress
- Don’t worry about delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)
- Never stop pushing yourself to be better
Last week, my depression problem once again came to a head, along with the stress that it brings. My solution? Same one I’ve use so many times over the last four decades; hard exercise. I went for a run.
It was rough, really rough, but I needed it, so I showed up and did it.
Going for that first run in eight months was hard, not just from the viewpoint of “a hard workout,” but from the viewpoint of, “it was hard to show up.” Didn’t matter, I showed up, and did it.
The recovery was awful, especially those first few cooldown minutes. It was so bad I didn’t even notice I had burned off the cortisol, relieving the worst of the stress from the crisis.
Hard? Yes, but I followed every rule in my efforts to recover from the crisis, including pushing myself into, and ignoring DOMS. DOMS is a harsh mistress, and one of the largest barriers to regular, hard exercise, but I don’t care. In fact, she’s become an old friend. I enjoy the pain.
Which is a good thing, because today, I went for another run. A little longer, and a little faster than last week, pushing to be better.
It’s all there; simple rules for life.
It’s a shame that “simple” in no way implies “easy.”