Dealing with depression

This is not an area I wanted to cover or did I feel I would ever speak about, but the response from my first blog towards this and the people who private messaged me who also feel this way has lead me to speak more about it, but I will try and stress the situation in this blog, as from here on in I will only really discuss weight loss, life, motivation and the journey I encounter from day to day. 

The messages I recieved were deep and lead me to writing this so I hope it helps.

So what is Depression? I touched on it in my first blog it is literally a chemical in balance in the brain which can lead to the severity of your condition and can be treated by medication or in my case a different approach to life.

I am not a Doctor so my theory on Depression really is a last resort and take with that what you will; this is not something I considered was happening to me at the time. I had no idea what was happening I just knew I had became a wreck on the inside and I wasn’t me anymore.

What I mean by this is for 28 years of my life (now 33) I was pretty confident and care free and I didn’t let much effect me, Then I was turning into an emotional wreck and fighting at every turn just to get out of bed in the morning. I wasn’t the same laughing, jokey, sarcastic guy anymore I had became a recluse fighting with my own mind and trying to put a face on to please everyone else, but on the inside just wanted to disappear. There were nights my wife would come in and I’d be sitting in darkness and she said she was afraid to turn on the light in the fear of what she would find. This tears families apart if you let it and it takes a life changing moment to start the turnaround.

So how do you solve this issue? good fucking question, I look at guys like Gary Speed (Wales and Leeds player/manager) and Robin Williams (Actor) all the money in the world and couldn’t beat their demons so why am I any different ?

The system fails you at every turn, I cannot begin to count the amount of doctors I seen who all sat and gave me that same patronising look, none of them got it and none of them certainly understood it, I was sent away with so much bollocks just try to be more positive, try get out more, keep yourself active. They all sit and look at you as if you are withholding some nasty secret that makes you feel like this. The truth is I had a good job, beautiful wife and kids there was no way in hell I should be feeling this.

It wasn’t until I was sitting watching Sky Sports news one day with not a care in the world I felt a breakdown coming on (yes you literally can feel it creeping up) I took a break down picture it as you just lost the love of your life. I was in floods of tears for no reason I instantly grabbed my phone and took a selfie and also recorded it.

The next visit to the doctor I said maybe I am not being clear enough with words and showed him my phone, this is what finally got me a reaction from the medical professionals and I use the word professional very sarcastically.

Over the course of the next few months I was on 2 different kinds of Anti depressants Citalopram and Fluoxetine I have actually heard positive things for some conditions for these. but for me it was an opposite effect and at one point it flashed through my mind on the M8 (motorway) I could just crash this car right now and this will all go away. 

What people need to realise is you are feeling like you are trapped in your own personal hell with no escape day in day out and there comes a time when thinking straight is no longer there and you start to think of relief, you are not thinking of your family or your job the mind literally goes and it is up to you to sink or swim.

Another form of treatment is going to counselling so you sit there and waste weeks speaking to some nurse who has never had this condition and are expected to take their advice. I found I got to the point where none of this was working so I had to take control and look at other avenues. This involved binning all forms of medication and going by me how I felt and what can I do to make me feel better.

For years I had a party lifestyle was I paying for years of excessive partying and bad nutrition?  If you can create an in balance can you undo an in balance?. These were all the questions going through my mind. If you read my first blog I went to 24 stone this wasn’t going to be an easy road back to health.

The first two steps for me were vital I started exercising and this does give you temporary feel good factor and now the real popular choice I gave up alcohol. The later of these two is not something I know many people would even consider, They see alcohol as a coping mechanism after a hard week at work lets unwind and have a few and forget.

for me this is the opposite I keep saying I am not a doctor but feel it is a poison in our society and also feel it plays a major role in illness mentally or physically who am I to judge but if anyone is serious about changing their life for the better this must go.

Other important factors were:

  • Eating more fruits and vegetables getting as much vitamins and minerals into my body as I could.
  • I would go and sit in steam rooms and think of life the hot feeling and the sweat relaxed me going from hot to a cold shower back to hot again. I liked it and felt amazing.
  • I would supplement in magnesium to help aid the brain as magnesium deficiency can also be a factor in feeling depressed Bananas and Almonds were a good food source
  • Taking time to sit and meditate and take your mind to another place is also very helpful.
  • I need like minded positive people next to me and I like to think if they read this they know who they are and I love them all because without them I was done.

Above are just coping strategies I used but not one of them are proven for curing depression they just make it easier. 

From where I was 5 years ago to where I am now is night and day. I still have my moments but I have embraced it, I am damn stronger mentally than I have ever been and I won’t let anyone dictate how I should live my life. Am I always right hell no but ill tell you something a doctor wont, I have had it and I understand it.
We all have they moments before you go to bed at night where you say tomorrow I am going to wake up and I am going to exercise and I will eat better because this is good for me. Then tomorrow comes and the same nasty cycle repeats itself you watch the same stuff on Tv, you go on Facebook or Twitter and get socially taken in by all the problems in the world and really bottom line is we can’t control what happens in this world, the rich and the power hungry keep us at bay. 

What you can control is you and how you live your life and this comes from within the phrase “The only person that can help you is you” get it stamped because this is your book and that is the title.

I listen to a lot of motivational speakers and I plucked this phrase and it carries me through day to day 10% of life is what happens to you the other 90% is how you react to it, so why can’t we just live at the 90% and not get pulled down by emotional gravity. I use this everyday at every moment how I react will determine the situation and that is a key factor and If I feel strong enough I will react in the manner I see fit. With depression this is vital you always need to react in the manner that combats the illness.

I won’t change who I am in life because of other people, I have found most people in life wouldn’t do a 1/3 for me what I would do for them but that is ok I won’t change who I am because of how other people think, I am the person I am maybe blunt and to truthful but if you dont like it I aint holding no gun.

So positivity is Do not say you can’t because you can, repetition of affirmations leads to belief but this can also work as a negative like I am worthless, I suck, to I am the greatest, I am worthy once this becomes a deep conviction things begin to happen. 

Look at Connor McGregor in the UFC or Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid these guys believe they are the best and in their chosen fields you cannot argue, But what do all great sportsman or athletes have that we don’t or any successful person they believe and they have a passion for what they do and over time if it is depression or any other illness a placebo effect can just maybe fire up the passion and belief that we are better and stronger to combat any illness if we just make the right choices. 
You can change your mind state in an instant, when you are depressed you could be slouched or head dipped, feeling sorry for yourself and your mind can be gone, so change your state think of something that makes you laugh if it doesnt make you laugh it will make you smile change phsysiology sit up right open your eyes just change the voice or change the complexion.

Take the mindset in writing this blog do I think of the negative or if anyone want to pick at it or be negative, no I don’t I think when I write I hope it makes people laugh, smile, cry or relate and I want to do the best job I can in giving someone who is suffering some sort of hope.
#AlwaysBelieve

My life Introduction and weight loss journey William McGill

 

Before I start I need to stress I am no nutritionist or expert and this may not even work, but my motivation is to document my movements and if it pays off put it out there for other people to look at and take a little inspiration from. If it doesn’t I will simply hit the delete button and this never sees the light of day.

A little about me – I am 33 years old I have 2 kids I left my Job in February so I could focus on my health and fitness goals 100%. I also study Health and fitness at City of Glasgow College and am learning more on the aspects of health, which sees me currently doing an HNC in Health and Fitness at 33 years old. This was never in my plan but to move forward and do something you love sometimes you need to sacrifice. I am aiming to go from 5xl T shirt to becoming a qualified personal trainer.

Prior to going back to college I have been on a weight loss journey. I got married 6 years ago and weighed in at 24 stone. I am only 5ft8 and had a up to 54 inch waist and my T shirts were a 5xl at the time I was a walking heart attack and then my wife fell pregnant and our son came along and this is when my mindset started to change.

I am a classic example of the yoyo dieter; I love cakes chocolate and fast food (who doesn’t?) but the key is discipline and consistency. Having kids can have an overwhelming effect on you as a person and for me this made me reflect. For years I fell into a cycle of going out with friends and drinking excessively from the age of 18 to roughly 26, my life was for the weekend I was a bit of an arsehole only really thinking of myself.

It was a case of always having a good time and being with the lads, was I ready to be dad? I don’t know but you need to learn quick as those little people depend on you and it becomes about them now and not you.

It was when my son was born the realisation for me set in I am killing myself with my current lifestyle and really when I sat back and looked at it I wasn’t happy. Sure I had a good family life and work but money never ticked the boxes for me. I needed my health back and decided I needed to start the ball rolling and thinking about how I was going to achieve this.

I decided to start taking more care of myself so I bought a chain driven cross trainer and a sauna suit and this helped me shed the first 4 stone. Before the experts chime in, I’m aware it wasn’t the safest way to lose weight but my argument was 24 stone wasn’t that safe either so I’ll take my chances. This helped me get to under the 20 stone mark which made me more driven and more determined to succeed.

Losing weight is a lonely experience you find you need to pull yourself away from people and I certainly felt this way. Take social media as an example – I found I blocked people or I would delete my Facebook or Twitter accounts more than anyone. People take it personally but for me its isolation. It’s my way of escaping and recharging, naturally I am quite sociable but during this period I am constantly battling a mindset and sometimes I retreat out of the public eye.

With a bad lifestyle comes a series of problems. I felt tired all the time and this simply made me miserable and later on after numerous visits to the doctor I found out I was suffering from depression and anxiety. I felt socially awkward I didn’t want to be around people I was struggling at every turn.

Depression is not something I want to dwell on too much but this word gets thrown around a lot these days and depression for me WAS a living hell. The knowledge people have about this illness is either lacking or its just sheer ignorance. For me I had a rock in my wife and she helped me through this, I was not the easiest person to live with and my behaviour was very erratic from day to day. I’d be happy some days and other days I wouldn’t want to get out of bed; my wife didn’t know which version of me would wake up each morning. I was breaking down in tears for literally no reason and on a day to day basis simply couldn’t function. I couldn’t even bring myself to answer a phone. Some people who I was close to and still am are the ones I confide in. Depression may be horrible but it has taught me serious life lessons showing me I know who I can trust and I know it made me find a stronger version of me on the inside.

Medication for some people is the answer for cure and if I am honest for a while I thought so to, but there was never any real progress it was either a side effect kicks in or it just leaves you feeling numb but for me it was a mindset at the time.

I never ever thought I would feel normal again I literally thought my life was over I thought about crazy stuff my mind was gone, there was no escape but you need to look yourself in the mirror and tell yourself I wont let this illness defeat me and through time and gaining knowledge of how nutrition can effect the body and various other methods such a meditation I began to feel like me again.

Depression is a chemical in balance in the brain which I put down to years of neglect and an excessive party lifestyle it is not sadness it doesn’t just go away my way of describing it is I hear people complaining every Sunday about how they are never drinking again as they lie with a hangover, well I felt like that for 2 years straight it is the same horrible feeling.

I never started to take care of myself until my son was 12 weeks old this is how I time it and judge how far I have came, the first major step I took was to give up alcohol this was not easy and it is the proudest thing I have ever done and I would go as far to say for the first 2 years it was always on my mind although after a while that maybe changed to the odd occasion weddings, Christmas and whatever event came next sometimes rather than drinking if I am having a bad week I generally eat my feelings this has saw me yoyo from a 10 stone loss to be back at 17 and a half stone whilst on my second year of a course I started in health and fitness and wanted to do this to change my life but feel I am letting it pass me by so do I practice what I preach or do I give up.

Knowledge wise I seem to have it, I pass all tests theory based more or less first time but I am my own biggest critic who wants to listen to a fat guy tell them how to look after themselves that is unfortunately the way of the world I am now in May 2017 do I crank this up a gear and go for it or do I accept this is me and go back to a job that makes me miserable and just ticks me over from day-to-day.

The aim of me documenting my journey is if I succeed I want to help people who feel the same and understand this is more of a psychology issue than a training issue it is what we put into our bodies that determines who we are everyone knows that phrase “you are what you eat” well there is a lot of truth to that but it boils down to

How much do you want it ? Are you prepared to work for it ? For me I honestly do not know that answer because this is such a hard hill to get over, everybody wants to look and feel good you can have all the money in the world but if you don’t have your health well you haven’t got shit

on my journey when I’m heavier people patronise you and speak to you as if you do not know what you are doing  and it is a feeling of being worthless, but hey newsflash when you are carrying weight form is not so easy but when you start to lose weight all of a sudden people listen and look at you different, speak to you different, this is not a mindset people are judgemental it is a fact even I do it but its something I try not to do but we are all guilty of it.

My aim is to work with people who are just like me and help people, I understand the pain and the cravings but more importantly I understand the loneliness the feeling of isolation and the need for fulfilment.

sometimes you have to be selfish in order to sort out you and this takes time no fad diet will solve all your problems but a lifestyle change is the pathway to happiness. 

This thought to document came to me on new years day 2017 and I aim to record my story and share my experience with others

I Started to go for it again on January the 2nd so why not start on January the 1st ? Really who starts a diet on a Sunday 😉  #Alwaysbelieve