Unfortunately, suicide is the biggest killer of men under the age of 50 in Ireland and the UK. In the UK alone, 100 men take their lives every week with young males three times more likely than women to commit suicide. And it’s a growing problem to men in their 40s.
But thankfully now, what was once considered a taboo subject and would be brushed under the carpet, put down to a load of bullsh!t excuses, is now a topic that is acceptable to be public domain. There is always someone who can help.
But did you know that exercise, be it running, cycling or kayaking (or anything that gets the heart pumping) can help manage depression and beat depression.
After mountains of research, modern thinking, and new technology, the following has been discovered.
Depression is connected to having low levels of certain neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine and serotonin. These can be stimulated by…you guessed it…exercise.
Exercise can help fight the chemical imbalance that cause depression. Some side effects of this imbalance can include, lack of energy, headaches, lethargy, anxiety, poor concentration, lack of confidence and lowered libido. Running, for example, can challenge all of these mentioned.
Did you know that in the UK, GPs are now prescribing gym memberships because there is solid research, in the cases of mild and moderate depression, exercise is as effective, if not more useful than, medication. I believe this is ground breaking!
Other reasons why exercise so damn good for you…
- It helps brain cells repair (let’s be honest, we all need a bit of that)
- It improves memory
- It boosts decision making
- It improves multi-tasking skills
- It lengthens your attention span
- It helps the generation of new blood cells and growth of new nerve cells
I have lost count of the amount of sh!t days I have had in the past, albeit from work or whatever, and knocked back a few pints. Yes, it’s a short-term fix but you wake up the next day even cloudier, But when I walked passed the tavern door and hit the hills, it is like a release, the head clears and I feel a hell of a lot better than I did before I donned by runners.
One of the main ideas behind Kayathlon.ie, was to get people moving, off the sofa, achieving better states of physical and mental health. In one way or another, there are very few of us that, who haven’t been affected by depression or suicide, either directly or indirectly.
But by shedding light on it, I hope that we understand there is light at the end of tunnel. The support is there. Reach out! Its not a sign or weakness, its a sign of strength. As the coined term goes, Its OK not to feel OK. There is nothing embarrassing about it.
Talk! Walk! Run!
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