Thursday, 31 July 2014

Culture of Optimism

From the mighty Google - Post Marathon Blues 

Symptoms of post-marathon depression match those associated with general depression. The person’s thoughts become negative and his energy level is drastically diminished. He might experience feelings of anxiety, irritability and despair. Runners experiencing depression commonly have difficulty concentrating, loss of appetite and erratic sleeping patterns.

I didn’t run a marathon, yet the above symptoms resonated.  It wasn’t something I’d heard of to be honest, until reading a book the other week when this subject cropped up.  As the author listed the symptoms, I was mentally ticking them off, yep got that, that too…

It’s safe to say my walking and health have plummeted since coming back from Nepal.  It wasn’t supposed to work like that.  It was meant to be a springboard, a reward for a year of work.  In the 10 weeks after coming back I have gained 16kgs (Over 2.5 stone or 35Ilbs), daily steps dropped by a daily average of 10,000 and the number of walks completed stood at a mighty 2.

I was always going to cut some slack for a week or 2, I deserved it after all.  2 weeks become 3, then 4 and all the gains drifted past.  I could see it happening, I could see the scales going the wrong way and the clothes getting tighter.

The JMT is now looking impossible.  Confidence is shot.  Walking in the wilderness needs a bit of training and a modicum of health.  I have neither.

My heart says ‘sod it, just wing it like usual’; my head is full of doubt.  The flights and hotels are booked, so I can’t waste them?  Right?

The hearts voice is getting louder, wing it, wing it, wing it…. what's the worst that could happen?

(Note to future self, when you embark on a weight loss regime, don’t throw away all your old clothes at the first sign of success… )


  1. I recognise these symptoms, too - this depression/malaise always seems to get me after a great break. And after a couple of weeks away trekking in the Albanian Alps, I've been feeling it quite badly. Part of me is pleased we are having a slightly quieter spell at work just now (time of year), but the other half wishes it was busy so I'd have no choice but to get stuck in and deal with it.

    So don't feel too bad.

    Fitness is another issue. Having got fit enough for the trip (just - busy at work meant I wasn't as fit as usual or as I would have liked) I have managed to keep it up - at least so far. On a positive note, though - just remember: if you've done it once, you can do it again. It might sound glib, but rather than thinking about how far off ready you might be for the JMT, set yourself some small, achievable goals to tick off along the way - some "improvement" will be better than none - and that way there can be positives to attain and build on.

    Most of all, though, good luck and try to stay positive. After all, EBC isn't a walk in the park!

  2. Thanks, yes just a down in the dumps. However, I cant wait for the USA. I'll just see how it goes with no real goal. I can walk as far (or as little) as I want with no pressures and deadlines.

    The weather is a bit iffy in the Californian mountains at the moment, so that will make it more interesting!