The latest England Athletics #runandtalk week encourages runners to get their mental health issues out in the open
England Athletics #runandtalk campaign – supported by the charity Mind – has given an opportunity for their mental health ambassadors (MHAs) to offer local sessions where anyone can come and give running a try. Bring together the great outdoors, the enthusiasm and experience of the MHAs, plus the expertise of run leaders and coaches, and trying out exercise becomes less intimidating, more welcoming, even – dare I say it – fun.
I’m living proof of the inextricable link between running and positive mental health. Amid the turmoil of a complicated divorce, I set up a morning run group. I wanted to offer support to single mums like me, who could only run when their children were at school. As I went in and out of the school playground, every day, for years, so many of them would share their life issues. We all needed an outlet.