Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Anyone suffer from depression?

Old 06-24-13, 07:52 AM
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kenseth03
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Anyone suffer from depression?

I am currently going through the worst depression of my life. Everything just seems to be falling apart. I want to ride my bike but just don't have the desire to go riding. As a Clydesdale I need to exercise so badly. I have been to the hospital with chest pains and they say it's just stress but i'm afraid my health will eventually go down. This whole year has sucked so far. My wife started having health issues in March, then she lost her income so now im the sole provider for my wife and child and it's tough right now. More stress, more depression. Anyone have experience with this? I've tried several antidepressents that my doctor prescribed but my depression just seemed to worsen. Im at the point of desperation.
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Old 06-24-13, 08:12 AM
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I do. I am under a doctors care and medication. I've been to counseling to help me sort things out and get a better perspective. But here's why I'm replying; just this morning I had a "bad" ride. The legs were just not cooperating. My wife was encouraging me and told me that our two kids that are still at home had been telling her how much better I am doing since I committed to cycling, eating well, etc. I've been on meds for about a year, but they are noticing this change in the last 3-4 months. I had a counselor tell me early on that I need to get "walking and water", meaning to make sure to get exercise and drink lots of water.

I don't know if I can give you any advice other than to get other people involved. Does your doctor have any ideas why the meds aren't helping? Do you see a counselor? If not, I'd recommend it. One thing that I learned was the meds helped my responses to situations and circumstances, but that the situations and circumstances were still there. A counselor might be able to help with ideas on how to either change those situations or help you change your perspective about them.

Sign up for a group ride, a charity ride, or something to shoot and work for and to get you back on the bike. That's what got me going this spring, at least.
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Old 06-24-13, 08:13 AM
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you are not alone. one foot in front of the other. reaching out is good. I admire you! increase your support network if you can. talk to more people if you can. regular counseling should be included even with prescriptions, and not counseling with a social worker or psychiatrist, use a psychologist (an actual Dr. w a Ph.D.), preferably one of your same gender and slightly older. although adding any counseling is better than none. there are also free hotlines.

it's ok to take time for yourself. you can't take care of other people if you are not well.

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Old 06-24-13, 08:19 AM
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Hi, Kenseth. I've never been diagnosed with or medicated for Clinical Depression but I'm fairly sure that I have suffered and occasionally continue to. a few bouts with it over the years. There are days when the only thing I want to do is just crawl away someplace and completely disappear. This may be different from what you're dealing with so I can only speak as to what helps me. Believe it or not, exercise greatly helps me. I've noticed that the times when I suffer the worst of these feelings are the times that I'm typically the most sedentary. I've recently been dealing with some injury/ medical issues that kept me off of my bike for about 10 months. Things got REALLY bad in my head so, against medical advice, I started riding again about two weeks ago (I do NOT recommend going against medical advice, but I had to make a choice that was right for myself).

Exercise probably won't "fix" what's going on with you, but it can very definitely help. On those days that I least feel mentally up to riding, I force myself to go precisely because of those feelings. Riding is a lot more than just a matter of physical health for me. For me, it's very much about mental health, or at least "mood", as well. It always helps me get through the down times.

Talk with your doctors and, if you're a religious person, talk to God. But, whatever happens, hang in there and never give up hope. Things always get better. I promise. I hope you find your Peace.
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Old 06-24-13, 08:42 AM
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It's so nice to see people who are so supportive and I thank you for it. I have tried several antidepressents and they tend to either make me more depressed or I have really unusual thoughts so we had to quit with them. The doctor just told me some people can't take these meds. As for counseling, I went for awhile but the co=pays were high and with me being the only income in our house I had to quit. There is a local MEET-UP group that I may go to but I hate talking about these issues in front of a group setting, but it may be the only option. I may try to force myself to get on the bike this evening when it gets a little cooler. I truly appreciate everyones input. It's nice to know that people that I don't even really know care. Thank you so much!
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Old 06-24-13, 08:58 AM
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There are so many variants on medications these days, sometimes it takes a few attempts to find the right one for you.
In the meanwhile, and even once you do find one that works, a support group can do wonders. And to be fair, support groups (like medications) will differ from one to the other and you may need to try different times or locations to find the one which is right for you. I've had very positive experiences after finding the right support groups for my issues, hopefully the same will hold true for you.
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Old 06-24-13, 08:59 AM
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Try googling sliding scale mental health in your area. You may find some affordable counseling that way. It will probably be with a social worker but that's fine. I find that some therapists have helped me with my depression and some haven't. The difference seems to be based on who the therapist is in relation to who I am. Not on the therapists degree. I am on Wellbutrin which helps, but definitely doesn't cure. Today I looked up my mileage for June so far and my wife said she could see the depression take hold as I realized I wasn't even at 50 miles for the month. I think the difference for me now, is that on medication I'm able to ake that in and get on with my ride, and my day, instead of shutting down completely.
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Old 06-24-13, 09:25 AM
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I couldn't claim to be depressive in the clinical sense. I do know, though, that my moods are heavily influenced by my levels of physical activity and that it's circular. If I ride, my mood is more positive and I'm more inclined to ride more, and to be more proactive in other respects. If I don't ride, my motivation drops, I am less likely to ride the next day, and will tend to be passive in other aspects of my life.

So if you can face it, make the bike ride a priority. There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.
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Old 06-24-13, 09:26 AM
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I suffer from depression. The one thing that helps is

"don't think just ride"

Charlie
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Old 06-24-13, 10:09 AM
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I suffered from depression, body aches and fatigue for years. I gained weight and had little desire to do anything that was not passive. I was prescribed dangerous drugs because they thought I had RA. I was fortunate however. A doctor asked me some questions about it, and I was sent for a sleep study. Amazingly enough, I suffer from sleep apnea. I never got a night's sleep, and never felt refreshed upon waking. I was ordered a CPAP, and it has changed my life. I still get depressed at times, and it is sometimes difficult to find the energy. But if I just do as some of these folks say, go out and ride, and get a good night's sleep I am okay. I hope for you, they find what works for you, because I have been there. All the way to the tune of 293 pounds.
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Old 06-24-13, 10:11 AM
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Sometimes its just your turn... Watch that horizon...

Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
you are not alone. one foot in front of the other. reaching out is good. I admire you!
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Old 06-24-13, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.
Sig worthy. Thank you!
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Old 06-24-13, 10:27 AM
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I take a fistful of meds every day to keep myself from harming myself or anyone else. However, these meds are also why I weigh 310.

Depression is rough...get help, there's no shame in it. Keep riding...you'll do fine.
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Old 06-24-13, 10:42 AM
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Thank you all for listening to my whining and for your supportive input which I will listen to and try my best to put into action. I literally don't have one single friend. The only person I have to talk to is my wife and she has her own problems so I don't want to drag her down, so thanks to you all for your support and input. It means a lot.
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Old 06-24-13, 11:04 AM
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Life always has it's ups and downs. Sometimes those ups don't seem to last long enough. Find ANYTHING that will put a smile on your face or ANYTHING to simply take your mind away from the every day struggles. For most around here, the bike is a good outlet for that. In 09' was my super low, my younger brother passed at age 24, he served three tours in Iraq for our nation....... I rode a $hit ton. IT was my outlet, sitting at work or home wasn't healthy for me. I was lucky enough to have a good friend willing to ride w/ me most of those times. Being sociable helped allot and the bike the connecting point.
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Old 06-24-13, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
TI literally don't have one single friend. The only person I have to talk to is my wife and she has her own problems
Look at the responses here, and look to this community. You have friends, and you have people to talk to other then just your wife.

Not to take anything away form you, but I've been there too. 2008 was a very bad year for me, the whole year! I lost twin boys at the beginning, almost died due to a ruptured colon a few months later, and was laid off right before Christmas. Medically I couldn't exercise or do much of anything. My weight went up, way up! My mood went down, way down. I won't go into details, but it was a very trying time for me. Once I was able to do more then just move around I jumped on my step-sons mountain bike. The first ride, a whole 1/2 mile nearly made me pass out, but I found joy. Riding was the only time I wasn't thinking about everything that had happened to me. When I would ride up hills was the best. The only thoughts in my head were to turn that crank over one more time, breathe, keep moving. Like Albert Einstein said, "Life is like riding a bicycle, to keep your balance you must keep moving." Then again, he probably never saw anyone to a track stand.
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Old 06-24-13, 01:17 PM
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I have; not so much anymore. I finally just got tired of not wanting to do anything and losing contact with people. I was fortunate to have friends that cared for me and would not let me sit home, alone, feeling all sorry for myself. I know how debilitating depression can be; you just don't want to move, think, react, do anything... my friends were beating at the door and forcing me to react. Reaching out even to strangers is good but sit down and tell your fiends, family, love ones and ask for their help. Professional help would also be beneficial if not required.

And as Rumrunn6 says "one foot in front of the other".. take just one step, one little step - that is more than doing nothing. I don't believe you have not one single friend; I suspect you are ignoring people who care. Start with your wife - your problem IS her problem too and then go to family. Join a mental health group - something like TOPPS - just so you have contact with people. If a member of Kaiser - they offer free classes to treat depression (as does a numerb if medical plans and hospitals)... the key is stop making excuses - easier said than done but if your want to be happy, stop waiting for it to come to you... you need to get up and grab it.

Good luck and take care.
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Old 06-24-13, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
As a Clydesdale I need to exercise so badly.
Focus on diet. A common myth is that eating healthy is more expensive. If you live off of processed foods, processed "health food" is more expensive. Hit the produce section and cook.

Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
I have been to the hospital with chest pains and they say it's just stress but i'm afraid my health will eventually go down.
It is good that you had that checked. Emotional stress can make your health decline. Controlled physical stress (exercise without over doing it) will help
Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
This whole year has sucked so far. My wife started having health issues in March, then she lost her income so now im the sole provider for my wife and child and it's tough right now. More stress, more depression. Anyone have experience with this? I've tried several antidepressents that my doctor prescribed but my depression just seemed to worsen. Im at the point of desperation.
I was on anti depressants from 2003-2004. Death of a sibling from cancer coinciding with traumatic job loss. (I had blown the whistle, and the crooked employers-a for-profit diploma mill- got away clean, and I got a knife in the back. Fellow whistle blower had better lawyer and fared better) In my case the anti depressants stopped working, largely due to my increased drinking, and I wound up committing myself for a week of inpatient care. Thank you VA. I will not dissuade you from medication, but there are alternatives, and you really need to be careful with them. Exercise, and in may case a good woman (I got out of the hospital to find a woman I had known in high school had tried to contact me for a reunion.) We had been friends back then, but connected and are still together nine years later. We fight a bit, but I know life would be much worse without her. She had never lost touch with the old home town-hadn't left as I did, and helped me reconnect with people I thought I would never see again.. Look to your family to help. You are all in it together.

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Old 06-24-13, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Pamestique View Post
I don't believe you have not one single friend; I suspect you are ignoring people who care.
I promise you there is not one single friend to turn to!!!! I would love to have a friend right now. Im desperate. I would not ignore one person who was willing to be there right now. As for my wife, she has her own health issues.
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Old 06-24-13, 03:40 PM
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The answer is in your post,,just get on your bike and ride! Forget about the pills and the doctors and therapists that are probably crazier than you and get on your bike and ride.

If your state allows medical marijuana, I would give that a try too. No kidden
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Old 06-24-13, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by psalm View Post
Look at the responses here, and look to this community. You have friends, and you have people to talk to other then just your wife.

Not to take anything away form you, but I've been there too. 2008 was a very bad year for me, the whole year! I lost twin boys at the beginning, almost died due to a ruptured colon a few months later, and was laid off right before Christmas. Medically I couldn't exercise or do much of anything. My weight went up, way up! My mood went down, way down. I won't go into details, but it was a very trying time for me. Once I was able to do more then just move around I jumped on my step-sons mountain bike. The first ride, a whole 1/2 mile nearly made me pass out, but I found joy. Riding was the only time I wasn't thinking about everything that had happened to me. When I would ride up hills was the best. The only thoughts in my head were to turn that crank over one more time, breathe, keep moving. Like Albert Einstein said, "Life is like riding a bicycle, to keep your balance you must keep moving." Then again, he probably never saw anyone to a track stand.
I don't know how you made it through all that. You must be a very strong person. My heart breaks for what you went through.
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Old 06-24-13, 04:19 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
I promise you there is not one single friend to turn to!!!! I would love to have a friend right now. Im desperate. I would not ignore one person who was willing to be there right now. As for my wife, she has her own health issues.
I have trouble making friends. I am shy and reserve and I guess somewhat apprehensive and wary of people. I learned that sitting in my house, all alone I will find no one, no friends. I had to step out of my comfort zone and put myself out there. I found, through mountain biking, a cool place to hang out. I can't tell you how many people I meet and befriend just sitting there enjoying the weather and talking silly mountain biking stories with others. My new Wednesday night ride partners are a husband and wife I met up there.

THIS IS IMPORTANT: I also volunteer my time and my best friend and I met through my volunteer services. There must be something in your town... a library, a school, a church, a nature center, a humane society, a community garden, teaching english as a second language, helping out at a food bank (whatever your interests are) - someplace you can go and volunteer. Not only will you be putting yourself out there to make friends, the service you give freely will make you feel better about your self. You said you were desperate - then get out there. Does your community have a TOPPS program
( similiar to AA but for weight loss). Alot people with your same issues generally attend these meetings.

And I won't make assumption but there seems to be an issue between you and your wife... I suspect you both need counseling as you both feed on each others misery and isolation. I am not saying this can't happen but it is hard to believe neither of you have any friends, family, acquaintances you can turn to. If that is the situation then I understand your despair but the situation is easily remedied if you just take that one first step...

Kenseth - its up to you... you have to act or you can stay miserable - the choice is yours. Take psalm's story... put things in perspective. Is your life really that bad? Is there really no hope for making things better? I tell myself everyday, I am blessed to have a good mind, a good sense of humour and good friends to enjoy it all with - but there was a time I did not... I had to push for a life I wanted.
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Old 06-24-13, 04:42 PM
  #23  
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Been there. Clinical depression on/off for many years. Here's a few things I've found that work.

Meds/Antidepressants - They work, and they numb the pain so you can function. They don't, however, address the cause of the depression. If you need them, take them. If they're not working try something else. Depression is more of a collection of symptoms than anything, there are many things that can trigger depression (and many things that can relieve it).

Therapy - Just talking it out with a professional can work wonders. Yes, they can be expensive, but how much is your happiness worth? I find a good therapist to be invaluable.

Exercise - Study after study shows it works, so go ride your bike. You know it makes you happy, so make it a daily habit. Even if you only have time to ride around the block, do that.

Diet - The gut has neurons (called the enteric nervouse system) that produce a large amount of the body's serotonin (the feel good chemical that antidepressants enhance) If you eat well and make your gut happy, you will also be happier. Skip the comfort/junk foods and eat whole, healthy foods. Get your fish and veggies, they do help.

Calming the Mind - Learning to meditate was the key to beating my own depression. It taught me how to stop the runaway negative thoughts that triggered bouts of depression. It also made me much happier. If you don't want to learn how to meditate, CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) is another way to observe and deal with negative patterns.

Friends - They are helpful. Go on a group ride or do something that gets you in a friendly group of people. Just being with others can help, and these acquaintances may bloom into friendships
.

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Old 06-24-13, 06:26 PM
  #24  
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Well, there are definitely some negatives going on in your life right now and I can understand why you are depressed. You have every reason to be stressed out and depressed. Is your depression "clinical" or "situational?" If your depression is brought on by the situation you're in, all the meds in the world aren't going to help you. While they may "lighten the load," you're still going to know you're depressed. The meds will just take the "edge" off.

There are other things to consider as well. There are some bad drugs out there and they can be very addictive. In some cases, anti-depressants can also change your personality, sometimes resulting in violent or suicidal behavior and/or thoughts. Some of these drugs can also wreak havoc on your sex life and emotions.

For me, I had to get off the anxiety meds I was taking. I was taking them for stomach issues, not for depression. I became a zombie. I had no emotions about anything and felt like I just couldn't give a damn less about anything, my wife included. I was basically "numb," to put it bluntly. My sexual performance not only suffered, but sex in general disgusted me. I knew something wasn't right with that. You *think* you know how you feel but you really don't feel that way at all. I *remembered* how I felt prior to taking the meds and realized, "Hey, this isn't right and I shouldn't be feeling like this." I had to get off those drugs immediately.

I'm not saying your experiences will be the same as mine, but they are things to consider. Think long and hard about whether or not you need these medications.

Believe me, I feel for you and what you're going through, and as others have mentioned, we're here for you as FRIENDS. Wishin' you the best of luck and wishin' your wife a quick recovery.
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Old 06-24-13, 07:20 PM
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DX-MAN
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kenseth, you have a fair amount of supporters here; add me to the list -- been dealing with that monster for almost 20 years now.

Blindsided by my first divorce, I felt like a failure; that didn't lift for a LONG time. But, ironically, when I DID shed that, it was soon replaced with, "I didn't do anything to deserve THIS -- goddamn, why BOTHER?" (THAT'S why I call it the monster...it's DIABOLICAL.)

I've done the counseling, done the meds, done the booze (not to excess!), and done diversions; truly, man, you HAVE to allow yourself -- GIVE yourself PERMISSION -- to have some "me time". You CAN reach the point where you'll be no good to your family without it.

Sit down with your wife; tell her what you're feeling, and to make sure she knows you're not calling her a BURDEN, TELL her you're feeling this so deeply BECAUSE she means so much to you! (It's TRUTH, right?) Make her a deal: she gives you her support for your time, you do the same, and encourage her to find what SHE can to divert her from HER misery. Hell, work on it WITH her!

You can get through this, one step at a time; you DESERVE to drop some stress, and SHE deserves a husband with less stress -- so does your child, for that matter.

And keep coming here; it can be easier to share with the separation provided by the keyboard, you'll feel less 'exposed'.
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