26 June 2014

Seasonal depression.....

Having experienced mild depression and knowing it can arise at anytime, I wanted to do a post about how I handle my depression, especially as we come into winter, where for most people it can get worse.  Being hyperactive means that I am prone to down days when I feel low, sad and removed from society.  I don't always show these feelings to others (the tough one) but have learnt how to understand the black dog a little more.  I have been lucky to understand how my mild depression works and ways I can limit those dark days when the black dog comes to visit and even though he comes to visit from time to time I find a way to use those days to re-evaluate and work through my feelings. 
Know one thing, depression is common, more common than you think.  It isn't a weakness and it should be something that needs to be talked about.  It can happen at any point in your life and when everything seems to be going very well, triggers can happen and you might not notice them.  Don't shrug it off thinking things will be fine. 
Here are some of the symptoms, thoughts and feelings a person may experience with depression.  I know I have a couple of the symptoms, I rarely get the thoughts though anymore as I can recognise the symptoms and know how I can stop the negative thoughts by replacing them with positive thoughts, actions and surrounding myself with people who make me feel alive.
The things I have learnt is how important it is to take time out for yourself. How important it is to have good friends and family to support you through thick and thin (not just the fun times).   I know I can always call my mum and have a chat about anything and it always makes me feel better.  I know if I give myself some downtime to enjoy simple things (reading a book, catching up with a friend) I can just relax my mind, escape from the hyper thoughts going on, the pressures I put on myself to achieve things and just be.  Yoga for me is something that has become weekly therapy. I make the time to have at least 1 hour minimum a week for yoga, to stretch, unwind

Behavioural symptoms of depression

 A person with depression may:
  • have stopped going out
  • not be getting things done at work or school
  • be withdrawing from close family and friends
  • be relying on alcohol and sedatives
  • have stopped their usual enjoyable activities
  • be unable to concentrate.

Thoughts caused by depression

 A person with depression may have thoughts such as:
  • ‘I’m a failure.’
  • ‘It’s my fault.’
  • ‘Nothing good ever happens to me.’
  • ‘I’m worthless.’
  • ‘Life’s not worth living.’
  • ‘People would be better off without me.’.

Feelings caused by depression

 A person with depression may feel:
  • overwhelmed
  • guilty
  • irritable
  • frustrated
  • lacking in confidence
  • unhappy
  • indecisive
  • disappointed
  • miserable
  • sad

Physical symptoms of depression

A person with depression may experience:
  • fatigue
  • feeling sick and ‘run down’
  • headaches and muscle pains
  • churning gut
  • sleep problems
  • loss or change of appetite
  • significant weight loss or gain.

10 June 2014

Non-Organised Tuesday!

Nothing beats a nice quick gym session in the middle of a busy working day after a long weekend.  I find if I don’t train early in the week it can be 2-3 days at least before I get to the gym again…. Except for my trusty mid-week yoga class of course.
I forgot my towel, water bottle and locker key (packing in the morning and not the night before means Dons is half asleep and less organised). Even though I didn’t have a few necessities for my gym visit I still trained.  At least I had the main items (undies, socks, shoes) so there were NO excuses.  I also forgot my gloves and I am super paranoid about taking off wedding rings so instead of doing my usual weights session I did the following circuit:
Warm up: 10mins hills (Level 16)  on cross trainer
20 squats using TRX
20 KB upright rows (24kg), KB touching ground in-between for more leg and glute activation
10 full push-ups
20 med ball twists
Repeated 3 x through, stretched and cool down.
Done & back at work in under 50mins!  Done for Tuesday! Bring on YOGA tomorrow.

5 June 2014

Hello winter…. It is that time of year again. I must admit I do find it hard to keep positive about things when it is cold, dark and wet & gloomy outside.  Distant reminders of living in London appear wishing I had central heating and could travel to cities in Europe on the weekend.  Drinking pints on a Tuesday, just because.
And the purpose for winter is?  Rain is good anytime of the year, but the cold and dark gloomy days surely aren’t good for us?  Aren’t we meant to eat ourselves silly, hibernate and sleep for a few months?  Bit hard to do that if you have a 9-5pm job!
I have a love hate relationship with the chilly months.  Love wearing my boots and wrapping myself up in a gorgeous jacket with a bright scarf!  I can laze on the couch with a big blanket and a hot drink watching trashy TV and NOT feel guilty like you do on a sunny day in January.  But the vital winter love is being able to blow=dry my thick mass of hair without looking like I have just done a gym session in the sauna!  Ahh truly the simple things in life.
For some reason I am always 2-3 degrees warmer than others, I am always walking around in winter with a summer wrap dress on, showing my arms (god forbid) – but still wearing tights and boots!  Good way to double the wardrobe! 
Homemade soup, stews, casseroles, pulled pork; roasts with all the trimmings and a glass of red wine are the main reasons to love the cooler months.  Nothing beats a cold wet Sunday lazing on the couch with the aromas of something cooking in the oven with a glass of Merlot in ones hands. Truly the reason winter is invented. 
 So today on this truly first cold day in June I had a gorgeous Laksa for lunch and I must get to the gym tonight even if it is cold, wet and dark and the couch is calling for me!

2 June 2014

June is challenge month......

I love a good challenge, it is true, I just need to pull my finger out and FINISH the darn things.  I swear I am just getting older and not bothered about some challenges - even though I did smash the Febfast challenge earlier this year with no drinking, no sugar, no fun for 28 days........ never say never.

So what challenges does June bring with it, besides it being winter which is going to push my "get rid of muffin top" motivation button harder (really do need to get healthier to get ready to grow a mini Jones).  So the usual health & fitness goals apply (eat better, train harder, drink less wine, eat more chocolate, (I mean less... ).  So I have created my own June health and fitness 30-day challenge... check it out here.
Getting married in April means changing ones surname... sounds like fun, a new identity, but in reality the list of places to change my name just continues to grow like Pinocchio's nose.... My goal is to complete the ENTIRE name change process by 30 June 2014.  As of today I have changed two things and have about 12 to go..... why isn't there just one little place in the city  you can wander in and see a guy with short sleeve white business shirt on called Larry who will complete everything for you? Yes I am even happy to pay a huge fee for this time saving process... but alas that hasn't been a priority for someone to work on & create. Typical.
Thanks to the wonderful @fatmumslim aka Chantelle Ellem we have an amazing challenge on Instagram which is designed to capture life and our experiences monthly by just one word to get the brain thinking about how you are going to capture that one word for that day.....  I have done a couple of the challenges but the last few times I have started and then I would forget I was doing it and remember at day 23 or something....  so June will be completed... Day One done...
Get busy peoples... I look forward to 1 July having stuck to the above challenges and as a result am healthier, lighter, energetic, creative and officially Mrs Jones!  Off you go then. Challenge yourself!

Dons xx