Active every day… to beat the blues away

Thursday, 3rd January 2019

Blog by Sector Group Manager, Ilona Alcock

Like many of you, I tend to spend my New Year’s Days on the sofa, watching TV and contemplating a return to reality that doesn’t involve chocolate for breakfast. This year however, I popped my trainers on and dragged my husband out for a jog round the park. Why? Because it is day one of RED January…

What is RED January?

Run Every Day (RED) January is a campaign in association with Mind to improve mental and physical wellbeing: encouraging people to get active every day to beat the blues away. It was set up by Hannah Beecham after seeing the huge benefits regular physical activity made to her mum’s depression and Mind became the official charity partner in 2017. You can read more about it or register here:

Mind Manchester is this year’s future pro-manchester charity. In addition to RED January, we will be
raising funds at the Made in Manchester Awards and at future-pro social events.

It is a cause very close to my heart after losing a friend, aged just 27, to suicide a few years ago. In fact, my first marathon was run for Mind in his memory. Since then I have made a concerted effort to look after my mental health in the same way as I do my physical health.

What will I be doing?

My plan is to be more active every day and to spend more time outside. It’s all too easy on dark winter days to hole up in the office rather than go for a walk at lunchtime! I’ll be tracking my steps (aiming for 15,000 a day), going to the gym 4 – 5 times a week and adding in a few nice trail runs.

In the interests of doing more to support my mental wellbeing, I’m also turning off social media notifications, not checking my phone before 8.30am or after 9pm and trying to carve out some time to relax at home.

It’s not too late to join in!

Whilst the campaign focuses on January, the benefits can obviously be felt at any time of the year. So if you’re tempted to give it a whirl, just get your trainers and get started. Let us know how you get on!