As simple as that. I've know it for a long time - all the clues were always there:
- One of my better therapists once said "excersise is psychiatry's best kept secret" And I've heard it said subsequently.
- My PDoc of many years used to run like a wild fanatic. He was totally addicted to it.
- I listened to a podcast some time ago about a psychiatrist that had a few marathon runner clients and how he noticed their depression levels fluctuate with their training. Eg. the one guy got an injury and had to stop training and his depression rocketed. The PDoc plotted it all out and got scientific correlations
I've already started losing weight too, and its starting to accelerate. After all the studies I've read about how ineffectual excerise is compared to diet, I wasn't really expecting to lose weight. After all, the kilojoules of a half hour run are completely negated by one slice of pizza. But that's too simplistic an approach. Here's how running works for my weight loss:
- One of my biggest issues with depression is my lack of energy. It affects everything, my work, my social life, my family life. Low energy levels = low activity = weight gain. As I've got fitter my energy levels have definitely increased. Suddenly you stay up later at night, and you find yourself moving around a lot more during the day.
- Feeling down -> have a gorge. On happy days I can go all day without a meal. But when I'm down theres only 2 things I can do - Eat & Sleep. And I make sure I do them well. As I've said running improves your happiness levels without doubt. So when you run - you spend less days down and less time at the fridge.
I used to be very fit when i was younger. And now I'm getting fit again. And I've made a vow never to get unfit again. Ever. I'm planning to run a half marathon soon and a full marathon in the future.
I've just joined a great website www.dailymile.com . You can see the widget in the right bar of this blog. It keeps track of every run I do. So if you see my runs slacking off, please, I BEG OF YOU - give me a shouting at.