Sometimes Black Dog Runs Are The Best Runs

Today I was running and I felt freakin’ awesome. Yes! I’m saying it. I’m owning it: I-felt-freakin’-awesome! FREAKIN’ AWESOME! Damn, I was pleased with myself. Extra pleased. Why? Because it was a Black Dog Run (a BDR, if you will). Let’s get some context, what was happening before I mentally declared myself a not-too-shabby-human?

Well, the depression; it managed to get me back in bed on a sunny afternoon yesterday (cos everything is pointless innit?). Not for long though. I forced myself up but the bed magnet is turned up very high at the moment. 

The anxiety? Ever present at the minute, causing shakes and the repeating of I’m going to die in my head. In fact, it was one of my first thoughts on waking this morning. How charming and useful.

What of my sleep? I wake drenched in sweat every night, the bedclothes soaking wet. I bloody stink. I woke up the other night terrified because I could hear shouting. The shouting was me. I had woken myself up. I spent a few seconds trapped in that half asleep half awake limbo. I was sleep shouting – which comes from my throat, not my mouth.

Like this? More like an aggravated seal to be honest…
That explains my recent sore throat then. So I was shouting but not in control of it. I honestly woke up like wtf is that noise? Crap. It’s me?! Speaking to the husband he says that I’m shouting like that a lot at the moment. Really? How are the kids sleeping through that?!

Anyway, the running. Right. I’m struggling with it at the moment but inspired by someone else doing an incredible running challenge I swore that my sorry, stinky arse would be getting out there and running today. I swore it and I only went and bloody did it and, thus, we arrive back at me being FREAKIN’ AWESOME.

So a BDR (Black Dog Run remember?) pays out big time. I felt so low and generally shit before I went out that when my mood lifted into happy runner mood it was a lift of gigantic proportions. To go from so low to happy, to feeling good? Well, it’s amazing. 

I had resigned myself to running slow and you know what? It felt good. I noted that I was running with good posture, even with my pigeon toes! 

I felt a literal SPRING in my step (cheers trainers!) as each foot hit the ground and lifted.

I listened to a guided run on the Nike Run Club app and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was called Kevin We Gotta Go! The speakers were completely in tune with what I needed to hear. They cheered me on. They talked about how just turning up is success and it absolutely felt that way to me today. I could have said no. I could have stayed in bed but not today. Today I turned up and I was proud of myself.

I don’t often feel proud of myself but I’ll tell you why I allowed that feeling today (is it the mountains of therapy? Maybe a bit…). I allowed that feeling today because, for once, I recognised my achievement. I know how damn hard the depression and anxiety, that are part of my BPD and cPTSD package, can push me down. It is indescribable. To come close sounds like exaggeration. If you’ve ever been there then you know it too: the dark and invisible force that robs your muscles of any power because your brain will not allow it. Listen, I don’t ‘look’ depressed (what even does that mean anyway?!). I don’t appear depressed. I seem actually rather…normal – and sometimes I am but sometimes I’m really, really not and I flit between the two states frequently. I know that people really cannot understand the fight that I have to put in because to say I’m good at hiding it would be an  understatement. 

You can see I’m clearly struggling right? Wrong!


Well, today at least I did. I’d usually shrug it off as me being pathetic but today I knew what determination, effort and downright stubbornness it had taken me to go out for that run. When the good feels arrived during my run I actually thought to myself ‘Well done lass. You’ve done it! You went out and it only went and bloody worked! You’re running! You have good posture! The sun feels good! The flowers are blooming! You are feeling strong.’ You bet I was smiling. 
When I arrived home my point of view had changed.

Some nice stuff I have at home
I took in all the stuff that I keep around this place to help me keep going when the Black Dog (and his pack mates) show up. 

I know that my mood will dip again. It’s been hours since my run now and I can feel the black tide coming in. No matter. It mightn’t quite swamp me this time. I have a life buoy to cling on to and it says FREAKIN’ AWESOME. 

Cos I was and I can cling on to that.

2 thoughts on “Sometimes Black Dog Runs Are The Best Runs

  1. This is just a fantastic post. I love the BDR- I’m going to think of them like this and remember your kickass approach. Thank you for sharing xx


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