Good day and welcome back!

This being the final installment of my blog, I’d like to thank everyone who has tuned in and read my blog. It’s been a great experience to share my strategies and feelings towards the topic of mental health. I’ve received a great response and felt comfortable opening up to so many people.

The size and impact of the run did not really set in to my mind until I started to see the amount of participants and support piling into Bez Gardens that morning. To hear speeches from people who still live a happy and successful life while dealing with mental illness was so motivating. Hearing all of the reasons why people chose to do this run and who they were running for was also very inspiring.

My inner saboteur was telling me that I couldn’t do this race and that I was crazy. Even the day of the run, around the 4 km mark, I was thinking to myself, “what the heck are you doing, you can’t finish this.” I let that thought go through my mind, focused on my music and the energy of running with so many people and pushed my way through and slowed down to walk when I needed to.

When I finished I was so impressed to see my time - I set a personal goal that I wanted to beat and I beat it! It wasn’t until I got home to my apartment that I felt a true sense of accomplishment in that I just did a 10 km race faster than I did when I was 20. This helped me to remember that mental health struggles will not control or consume my life. I can take charge and accomplish what I want to if I really do set my mind to it.

The overall energy of the Step Up run and all the support it provided is such a great way to address mental health stigma. So many people feel alone and that they are the only one when they are battling these issues. To see 2,000 people come together to raise money and support each other on that level is a huge step in the right direction.

In closing, I’d like to again say thank you to everyone who was organized the run, read the blogs and Stepped Up on May 11th. I am excited to continue my running and meditating and have already signed up for another 10 km in a few weeks!