Anxiety and exercise.

So this time last week, I was enjoying a family fun weekend in London. We’d had an Air BNB disaster but lived to tell the story. The main reason we were there was to support my two brothers running the London Marathon. Watching the programme every year, I’ve always been desperate to go and support the runners, racing around on the hot, cramped tube to catch a 2 second glance of my loved ones. And boy, it was good fun.

But the purpose of this blog post is for 2 reasons. I don’t know whether you may have heard but the Royals have recently launched the heads together campaign – raising awareness of mental health. With this, there was a programme – Mind over Marathon and I genuinely can’t stop thinking about it. A group of runners with a mixture of mental health issues and levels of fitness trained to run the London Marathon. It was honest, raw and so emotional. I was so relieved to finally watch something that felt genuine about mental health. One with anxiety being able to go out and train with others, but afraid to go out on their own incase someone was to attack them. One with depression, passionate and excited to train one day then the next, completely losing all interest and motivation.

I was relieved to see it showing the side of mental health that it is always there, ready to strike, even when you’re having a good day. Just because you are able to accomplish one task, doesn’t mean it’s gone or you’re better. I felt so relieved just to see real people, real stories and seeing them complete the marathon gave me such an immense sense of pride even just as a viewer. I am truly inspired and would definitely recommend watching it if you are able to.

Secondly, my post is for a bit of advice. I’ve always felt passionate about getting into running, both my brothers are keen runners following in my Dad’s footsteps. I love the atmosphere, the determination, the love, excitement and support from families. Unfortunately, I’ve always struggled to actually get into it. I seem to really struggle with breathing. Like seriously, I can’t even get up the stairs quickly without being out of breath. I’m not the healthiest but I walk about 30-40 minutes a day so I’m not completely inactive. I have been to the doctors about it before which ranged from having blood tests, a spirometry test and an ECG. It was mentioned at one point that my anxiety may have affected my breathing and I would need physiotherapy to essentially retrain myself to breathe properly again. But nothing seem to come of this and then I was being sent for more blood tests but by this point I’d pretty much given up. (I hate blood tests.)

So please excuse my waffling, but essentially what I’m trying to ask is – does your anxiety affect your exercise and how? How do you overcome this? I’m feeling particularly inspired following Mind over Marathon especially after seeing what a positive impact the exercise had on their mental health. Interested to hear your thoughts!

V 🙂


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