“I actually don’t feel that added pressure. If anything, to me, it’s just about continuing to live authentically, and part of that living authentically is that there’s going to be ups and downs—it’s not a linear progression at all and just giving myself grace with that is really important—and sharing those ups and downs. There are so many people that talk about eating disorders after they’ve conquered them or when they used to struggle but are over that now—and you see it a lot in the running world and I’m really, really appreciative who talk about it, but they also talk about it as a thing of the past, that it’s no longer an issue—but I think more of the reality is that there are many, many people out there for who it is still an issue day to day. And I think if I waited to a point where I was totally over it and in a really solid recovered place, honestly, I probably would never talk about it.”
— Amelia Boone
I’ve got a unique episode to share this week with two past guests of the show: Amelia Boone, world champion obstacle-course racer and badass ultrarunner, and Brad Stulberg, author of the books Peak Performance and The Passion Paradox, sat down with me for a roundtable discussion of sorts about mental health, eating disorders, OCD, recovery, running and racing, the desire to be relevant, social media and its influence on us, sharing our stories, and a lot more.
This is an important conversation and there’s a lot to think about and take away from it, especially if you—or someone you love—have dealt with mental illness in the past or are currently struggling. Many thanks to both Amelia and Brad for being so open, honest, and flat-out raw with me in talking about these difficult and personal topics.
Related links, references, and resources:
— If you are struggling with mental illness and need help, there are a number of resources at your disposal. If you’re having thoughts of harming yourself, you can talk to someone right now at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255. For more information about eating disorders and how to get help, check out the National Institute of Mental Health website, the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) website, or call the NEDA hotline at (800) 931-2237. To learn more about various forms of OCD and how to get help, check out Intrusive Thoughts, an online resource that humanizes the symptoms of OCD, celebrates the bravery of the community and helps sufferers get the treatment they deserve.
— When a Stress Expert Battles Mental Illness: Writing for Outside, Brad reflects on what he learned after an unexpected battle with mental illness.
— A Few Thoughts on Living Through Mental Illness: “Whenever the topic is in the news — unfortunately, almost always because someone has lost their life to it — I usually get overwhelmed with a rush of thoughts and feelings,” Brad writes for Thrive Global. “Here are a few thoughts on mental illness, borne out of my own suffering and ongoing recovery.”
— The Recovery I Needed: “I’ve fought like hell these past few years to try and keep myself healthy and running like I love to do,” Amelia wrote in a length post on her blog. “And while I was tired of fighting for many reasons, internally I knew I had one big fight left in me. Because there was one thing that I hadn’t tackled head on in a very long time: my eating disorder.”
— Changing The Way We Talk About Eating Disorders: “I’ve wanted to talk about it for a really long time, for years. But it never felt like it was the right time,” Amelia told Runner’s World. “I didn’t feel right talking about it because I didn’t feel like I was doing anything to proactively recover from it.”
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Music and editing for this episode of the morning shakeout podcast by John Summerford at BaresRecords.com.
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