Today I woke up. I took my pills. I ate breakfast. I drove the kids to school.
Just kidding. Hopefully I can keep it a BIT more interesting than that. But for real, that is how my morning started.
So now that we're back and chatting again, I feel like I need to admit that I have once again let myself go. I had a longish depressive time over the past few months, and I just really didn't care what I ate or how much I exercised. Depression, for me, sometimes manifests as really "down" days where I can't imagine how I'm going to get through the day and I just lay on the couch feeling sad whenever I don't HAVE to be doing something, but more often than that it's a kind of complacency. I just.don't.care. Things are fine, some people live in shacks next to a river of sewage, so why should I worry about keeping my house spic and span? Some kids eat nothing but McDonalds and my kids eat A LOT better than that, so whole wheat pasta thrown in a pot with ground beef and a can of diced tomatoes fairly often isn't so bad, right? All my desire for self-improvement disappears. One of the toughest things about depression for me is that you don't realize you ARE depressed until you aren't anymore and you're looking back on the past few months. Well, that and not being able to trust your own thoughts. That's pretty fun too.
It may be the new meds or it may just be my natural mood cycle, but I'm feeling better. And I want to stay that way. As long as I have the motivation and good mood to do so, I plan to do as many things as possible to keep myself this way, and I want to focus on the fact that things don't have to be all or nothing. They don't have to be 100% perfect or a mess, there can be a happy medium. I've been tracking my food, eating like a little angel and exercising for the past 4 days, and I know the time will come when I "mess up" but I am trying to be very aware that one mess up doesn't have to take things from perfect to crappy. If I can get back on track then I will still end up above-average.
Jumping to what seems like a completely different topic (but what actually is a little related), we went to Colorado this summer. The trip was nice and it left me with a desire to simplify, to live near friends, and to appreciate my mountains more. The Appalachians may be smaller and harder to spell than the Rockies, but they're still pretty nice and between you and me, I prefer them! And about 10 minutes away from my house is Gambrill Park, which is a really nice place to enjoy them. There are quite a few trails up there you can hike with your dog, and my dogs definitely need exercise. On top of that, sunlight and exercise for me and being out in nature are good for depression, so it's actually pretty dumb that I haven't been doing much hiking up there before now.
So on Monday I biked to the gym, took Bodypump and biked home. On Tuesday I hiked with my dog Hunter up at Gambrill (2 different 1-mile trails, since I wasn't sure how long it would take a beginner like me), Wednesday I biked to and from the gym to take Bodypump again, and today I hiked with Hunter at Gambrill again. Not too shabby! And since Will is begging me for pictures because he wants to live vicariously through me, I snapped quite a few on my hike today.
On the way there, the mountains weren't exactly visible so I figured I'd be hiking in the mist.
|There are usually mountains up there|
|Yes, he did try to climb out the window later. Thank goodness he was on a leash.|
|Hunter would rather I didn't waste time taking pictures.|
|For example, I noticed that someone had been having fun along the trail.|
The only time we have issues is when we encounter something like this, because it either requires that I unhook Hunter's leash, crawl under the tree or throw him over it. We usually figure it out though.
|Yep, I crawled under it|
|Pretty view looking down the mountain|
|But oof! There was a lot more mountain to go above me!|
|Nope. Only 25 minutes into my 1-hour hike.|
|Oh man. I'm already as pink as my shirt.|
|Smoky Bear. Telling us the obvious.|
|Woof. Woof woof woof woof, woof woof.|
|Hunter left his calling card for them. The joys of owning male dogs.|
|Ahhh, what a beautiful view. Of fog.|
|Mom, I can't see anything. Why are we standing here?|
|I've got my eye on you, you creep.|
|My favorite part of the hike, because it means we're almost done!|
|I've got a little more training to do it seems. Especially since I still run into things on my bike.|
|Luckily I am stronger than him.|
|Hunter, NOT trying to jump out the window this time.|
I know it's right. I just don't always trust myself. And even when I DO manage to know that it's right, there's still the truly believing it part.