The 6 week challenge and why I love it

As my regular readers know I recently signed up to take part in a 6 week challenge. This was done on an impulse decision because I was unhappy with so many aspects of my appearance and lifestyle.

Without a doubt best decision I could have made….

The experience has been so rewarding both mentally and physically because I’ve had to push myself.

For the first time in my life I’m following a nutritional plan and eating 3 meals a day….but proper meals. Better foods.

When I started i was eating a bacon baguette for breakfast, a half pounder burger for lunch and as much shit as I could find in the evening after dinner…

I hadn’t done proper exercise on a regular basis for 5 years either.

I’ve loved it so much.

I had a mental wobble, it caused me to miss 10 days of the challenge and lost out on 3 sessions too but the trainer sent me an email to check up on me and that was all it took to remind me what I signed up for.

The group is fantastic. Lots of men encouraging each other, pulling you up when you’re flat out on your back from exhaustion and motivating you for that one more rep…

I feel like I’ve found somewhere I belong. The trainers push you out your comfort zone because ultimately they want you to succeed, they want you to better yourself and they actually treat you as a person not just a client.

The challenge has changed how I see myself, I’m certainly nowhere near as big as I thought I was in my head and I can look myself in the mirror and feel pride at the weight loss so far…. Without the wobble it would’ve been a whole lot better but that’s depression for you. I’m happy and looking forward to my final weigh in Sunday.

But its not the end there…..a new challenge begins on Monday as I have signed up to continue with 30+ mens fitness and continue this journey for a long time to come.

The buzz I get after each session does wonders for me mentally. I’ve made new friends and look forward to the pain of each session knowing its all for the greater good.

The biggest thing I’ve learned is “accountability” if i lose or gain weight, if i go to class or miss class then its no one else fault but mine. I will get out of this exactly what i put in and this journey has been life changing.

I’m hitting a new 30 day challenge hard next week. 30 days till I hit 40 and with the help of Russ, Chris, John and all the guys in this fantastic group im going to smash it even more.

Exercise is fantastic for depression and improving mental health. Find a group like this join up and I guarantee you that you won’t regret it.

I look so much better, feel so much better and loving Garry again.

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New Beginnings

Ive removed all posts from the last few months. All traces of anything negative are gone for good. Its time for new beginnings, fresh perspective and changes.

I have no more to say on whats happened its been put in the history books and will not be mentioned here or in the real world again.

I’m looking forwards and starting from tomorrow I am going to attempt to finally give up smoking after over 20 years. I hate the smell, the taste and the cost of the nasty habit and I hate sounding wheezy all the time.

If anyone sees me with a cigarette slap it out my hands quick you have my permission.

Once I have got that under control I want to start getting into shape and lose weight. I need to get my physical health back as a priority because Im turning 40 this year and would like to be at least 3 stone lighter by the time my birthday comes around in November.

Changes for the better are coming and its down to me now to implement them.

Why Having Something to Look Forward to is Important

I spoke before about my targets for 2013 here and one of them was paying it forward to help other people.

With that in mind I have volunteered to attend the Time To Change Stereo Hype festival taking place in 2 weeks. I have been assigned to speak to people attending about mental health and it is something I am both excited and nervous about in equal measure!

Here is what I have in store..

Volunteer at the event

Getting African and Caribbean communities talking about mental health.

Stereo-Hype will take place at London’s Stratford Circus on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 January 2013. We’re looking for volunteers with lived experience of mental health problems to help us!

This two-day festival of performance, talks and creative arts is being run with and for people from African and Caribbean communities, and aims to start conversations about mental health and wellbeing. We particularly want people from African and Caribbean communities in east London to join us.

Volunteers will help us to encourage new understanding and challenge stereotypes around mental illness by talking to people about their experiences of mental health problems. There will be a range of roles for you to choose from, including a limited number helping us manage the event. Also roles speaking about your personal experience of mental health problems.  Full training will be provided.

 

obviously I am not African-Caribbean but this is by the by, it is an opportunity for me to speak to people about mental health and this is all part of the year of the Moose in helping others.

I am fortunate in the sense that I am comfortable speaking to people in most situations (usually shutting me up is the problem), I am happy to talk about my depression around people because I hope it gives other people the courage to do the same. Imagine if I spoke to one person, they spoke to another and so on – this is my motivation.

The big thing for me though is that I have something planned for the future, I will be going out and helping others as well as myself. I find that having something to look forward to works wonders for my depression.

Knowing I HAVE to go out and attend the event because I was selected as a volunteer gives me something to look forward to. It gives me a chance for 2 days of getting out instead of staring at the same four walls everyday and the days merging into another.

Every day brings a different challenge with depression so having a date in my diary gives me the chance to stay positive and aim for something!

This is vital when battling depression, knowing that something different is happening or going to happy, breaking the monotony of each day. Speaking from my own experience I know how much my mood improves just by going out and meeting people. As hard as it is to fight the urges to cancel, pull out at the last minute or no show it really is something I recommend to anyone with depression.

I’m even meeting a good Facebook buddy of mine in February so I am working hard to get out and about! And as we know how hard it is for me with my IBS issues to leave the house if I can do it then what is stopping you?

Naturally, what works for me is not going to work for others but have you at least given it a try? Hell I’m only on the end of the central line if you want to give it a try!

Get out, even for a few hours and it has the chance to make improvements in mood. Yet even if that fails at least you can say you have got out of the house and attempted something different!