I don’t really see myself as a committed runner, and certainly not an athlete by any stretch of the imagination. I’m just an old plodder who likes the thinking time and free space you can lose yourself in on a long distance run.
Running helps me escape the hamster wheel of thoughts and images whirring all the time inside my head – questioning, checking, trying to make sense of the crazy internal kaleidoscope.
I’ve always thought I was a bit mad, a bit weird, a bit different. Sentiments, that my non-running friends in particular have used to describe me many times.
Recently I’ve discovered that yes, whilst I am a bit different to many people, I’m not totally alone in the way I interpret things. I’ve recently been diagnosed with OCD – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – a mental health condition that affects around two in a hundred people.
It was quite a shock – even after years of sometimes desperate deep despair – to learn I had something identifiable. Something specific. Something with real symptoms which I experience in my daily life.
What’s encouraging though, has been finding out that it can be treated. In fact, I am currently in therapy and it’s already helping.