Running Restored My Faith after Losing My Olympic Dream- Amalia Bill

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Amalia was an avid horseback rider with her sights set on the Olympics, until one day she was thrown off a pony, leaving her left knee badly injured. “I couldn’t walk right, and I certainly couldn’t ride. After years of dreaming and working for something, it crushed my spirits. For years after I didn’t do any exercise, gaining 50+ pounds in University, and then beginning a serious battle with depression.”

Turning Point

“The turning point was when a good friend of mine was running a 5K and asked me to come with her. It was a first for her as well, and the idea of doing it together somehow made it less intimidating.”

Cure

“Running lets me clear my head. In moments where my depression would get the best of me, I found myself starting to turn to running instead of withdrawing from my social life and habits. It was on a run one day where I decided to tell my boyfriend everything, talk to my parents, and gather a support group around me. At the time I wasn’t suicidal but I wonder what would have happened. It’s incredible now that friends and family describe me as a ‘woman who is making her life an incredible adventure.’ ”

Amalia’s Advice

“Don’t ever, ever be afraid to ask for help. Funks are normal but if it seems to start lasting forever, it’s not okay. The worst part about depression is that you feel like you’re being unreasonable because you convince yourself there is nothing real to be upset about. But remember, you can’t help it. And the best thing to do for yourself is to find people who support you, cut out the people who don’t, and if you feel like it, go for a run.”

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