This post deals with depression and might be triggering for some readers.
Pretty soon here, it will be three years to the day that I made one of the best decisions of my entire life. Three years since I got up one morning and decided that I was actually going to work out on the stationary bike my husband set up in our shared office area instead of just thinking about it. Three years since I made up my mind to do the same every weekday morning after that, even if it killed me.
At the time, I had zero intention of one day becoming a fitness enthusiast. I like food, naps, and binge-watching Netflix way too much for that. I didn’t picture myself getting ripped, and I certainly never imagined that I’d one day sit down to write an article like this one and mean every word of it. I was just sick and tired of feeling sick and tired, but as it turned out, that was all I needed to start changing my life for the better in significant ways.
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Some of the things that have happened to me over the past three years were things I expected if I managed to stick with my plans. I lost body fat, built muscle, and had more energy. But many of the benefits that came with daily workouts I never would have seen coming in a million years. The following are some good examples.
1. My mental health started improving almost immediately.
Like everyone else on the planet, I’ve been told a million times that exercise is pretty much a cure-all for whatever ails you, serious depression included. I also wrote it off almost immediately as feel-good bullshit. I figured that sort of thing only applied to bored Karens that think getting the blues from time to time is the same thing as being clinically depressed.
I, on the other hand, had real, crushing, clinical depression. I’m talking about the kind of depression that makes you suicidal from time to time and causes your life to start falling apart eventually if you don’t manage to get on top of it. I sincerely doubted that a new pair of jogging shoes and some home workout equipment was going to do a damn thing about that.