Choices and Changes

This past week, I have not been taking responsibility for the energy I bring to the world--and into my own body. Despite connecting and laughing with 50 amazing women at the reTREAT, I came home totally sapped. Exhausted, enervated, wiped, couldn't rally, it what you want. I should call it what it is--a bad spell of the depression that I try to pretend I'm over--but I hate putting that label on myself.

Whatever it was, it was bigger than me. I felt like I'd been sucked under by a wave with a massive undertow that was pinning me to the sand. I went to bed crazy early and slept until nearly 8 every morning (that is huge for me); I could barely concentrate; I snapped at my kids and my husband (and, um, Sarah) simply because I couldn't find another outlet for my anger; I cried often and often for no reason other than I was sick of my mood and myself.

To be fair, last week is really the culmination of a slow build. This has been a slog of a summer for me. I'm not sure why, but everything has just felt hard and hot and in slow motion.

Regardless of how I got here, something has to change. I need life to be easier and at a fluid, happy pace. And I have to be the one to take responsibility for my energy; nobody else is going to--or can--change it for me.

So I've made two decisions:

I decided to try the Clean program, Grant, my husband, did the three-week detox about two years ago, and I can't tell you what an impact it had on him. When I talked to him on the phone, his tone was light and ridiculously positive. I want to feel that way, so I'm going to try it--and he's going to do it again. The preparation week, called the elimination diet and what I'm going to start tomorrow, calls for getting rid of caffeine, alcohol, wheat and sugar. Oh, and dairy.

Which leaves me with what to eat? Quinoa and olive oil and peaches? Pretty much. Actually, there's plenty to eat, but I have to be mindful about my choices and plan them out. (Read: no Coke Zero, Triscuits with Laughing Cow Cheese and an ice cream sandwich for lunch.) I know sugar and alcohol (and caffeine to a degree) help me climb virtual mountains, then crash me down a slope lower than when I started. I don't need to initiate any more crashes for a while.

I definitely won't the goodies them out of my diet forever--a life without Peanut M'n'M's  and wheat beer is a life not worth living--but the idea of rebooting my system has me excited. And Lord knows, I gotta be excited about something  if I'm trading my chai latte/pb+j english muffin/kids pancake remnants/handfuls of cereal breakfast for a almond milk/pineapple/kale smoothie.

So there's that. And in other news, I haven't just fallen off the training wagon; I've tumbled off it and rolled for about a mile. I haven't been in the pool for over 10 days, I haven't run in a week, and I sat in the saddle about 3 times last week. My lower back and left leg have been flaring up (again) when I run, and Harvest Moon, this half-Ironman that I was so giddy about four months ago is as appealing as eating that moldy yogurt on the bottom shelf of my fridge. (Luckily, I won't have to: no dairy for 4 weeks!)

Maybe I had a sixth sense that I'd be in this place, because I still haven't signed up for it. But I'm not ready or willing to throw away all my training; that will make me dwell even more. So I'm going to take option AB: the AquaBike. Swim 1.2 miles, ride 56 miles and call it good. No chance to inflame the injury, no reason to survive 13.1 miles. I don't want to start my Ironman training in the physical hole, and giving myself permission to skip the half-marathon makes me feel like that yogurt is actually still fresh and my favorite honey greek style. (But I still won't eat it.)

I went to yoga today, on the advice of a very insightful, loving friend, who told me to just be with my breath. Stay with it for the practice. Really hard to do, but when I calmed my ricocheting mind enough to remember her words, I exhaled with purpose, and imagined that I was sending love and light to my spirit with each inhale.

I finished the hour and rested in corpse pose, staying with my breath. I drove home, feeling more hopeful than I've been in weeks. As I turned into my driveway, I said "I am taking responsibility for my energy." Out loud. Just in case the universe has Sunday off. And then I took a deep inhale.

96 responses to “Choices and Changes

  1. This made me cry: but I am 7 weeks pregnant and you all know how close tears are to the surface at this point! And puke . . . but I digress. Thank you for sharing this, Dimity. I hope and pray that you will get to feeling better very soon. I bet the routine of school starting will help, along with the cleanse and new training goal. You are an inspiration–hang in there!

  2. Dimity,
    Your post was so much more inspiring to me than another perfect-fit-mommy blog. As a new mom, I struggle to keep it in the road—both in my running shoes and life in general. Thank you so much for honoring what’s real and hard within you—and therefore within all of us. I hope you are as amazed as I am to take in all of the support pouring out in these comments. All you mother runners’ posts have been so heartfelt and insightful—and have helped me almost as much as Dimity’s post!

  3. Dimity, it was such an amazing pleasure to meet you at the retreat! You inspire me (and clearly thousands of other women) and have help reignite my motivation after giving 100% of myself to my family for the last 2 1/2 years! You are a strong, emotionally intelligent woman! You will get through this difficult time. Having been through some terrible times in my life, i have grown through each and every experience. I am a believer in growth through challenge. Here’s to a good cleans (i to am gluten free due to celiac and have never felt better 🙂
    Cheering you on in MT!
    Xo Meghan

  4. Thank you so much for writing this…I definitely needed a reminder right now that I still have the power to make some positive changes in my life. As a stay-at-home-mom of 7 years trying desperately (but so far unsuccessfully) to re-enter the workforce, I decided that I really needed to create some goals for myself and started training for my first marathon this spring. I threw my heart and soul into training for this thing and now, with only 7 weeks to go, I’m finding myself totally sidelined with an injury that I’m not sure I’ll be able to recover from in time to continue on with my training. Your post helped me realize that instead of sitting around feeling devastated, I’m going to use this new-found time to focus on eating healthier and maybe discovering some other interests that will bring me the same joy that running does. I have to think that in the 35-40 hours a week that I will now have free, I can probably figure out a few ways to make some positive life changes!

  5. Dimity! I so needed to hear this right now. This summer has been a bit of a drag for me, too, and running seems to be the only thing in my life going in my favor. Thanks for the positive energy! Your writing and your experiences are so appreciated.

  6. Hi Dimity! Although I’ve been depressed, I don’t “suffer” from depression, but know it’s a hell of a thing to deal with. Where I connect with you is in your frustration with struggling to move yourself into a better space; you know, to unstick yourself. I think most people who know me would say, I’m no nonsense, smart, positive and an excellent cheerleader; I love supporting people to meet their goals or navigate through a rough patch. What I don’t think they know is, I feel like I am always floundering. I can’t seem to find my direction which makes me feel horrible and leads me into a loop I can’t seem to get out of (for years). So the cheerleader in me will tell you to cut yourself some slack. Honoring the space you are in, is the way for you to move out of it. The cheerleader will tell you, flexibility in life makes things easier, so it’s great you are rethinking your training and diet (your body is clearly trying to tell you something). Finally, I’ll tell you, you will get through this and once you do, you’ll have even more skills to help you through the next time the clouds move in. Thanks so much for sharing!

  7. As many have said, thank you for your honesty. It’s obvious that so many of us look up to you, and it’s easy for us to think it’s all sunshine and rainbows and calorie-free blizzards. Alas, it’s not. It’s human to have these days, weeks, and I find it best when I acknowledge it, give myself a set time to mope and then be done. In the other vain, I was struggling a lot this summer and have seen some improvement since I began limiting dairy. I didn’t think it would work but I have less bloat, less cramping and no more intestinal issues on long runs.

  8. Dimity – Thinking of you and sending you positive vibes! You do so much for so many…good job on remembering to do the same for yourself. Try not to worry about the training. Your years of fitness will help you rebound quickly to whichever training plan you desire. All the best and please keep us updated!

  9. Once again, I am moved to tears both by your honesty, Dimity, and by the compassionate, courageous, and supportive messages others share. Sending you thoughts for peace as you follow your journey through this — and saying a prayer of gratitude for you, Sarah, your books, and this community. Peace to you, my fellow mother runner!

  10. So humbled by your honesty. I think it is hard for us to admit when we are weak (or maybe just weaker than usual) and need to focus on ourselves to regroup.

    As far as food goes, I have been eating mostly Paleo for about 6 months (I occasionally steal a crust etc) and have relied a lot on other fine blogs for what the heck to make when I cannot have wheat, grain, dairy, blah blah. Check out (great blueberry smoothie on here) and for some good ideas. Against all grain may have some that are more family friendly and she categorizes then by what restrictions they need.

    You inspire and take care of so many of us in our time of need, let us repay the favor!

  11. Celiac disease was the cause of my depression many years ago. My husband and I nearly broke up over it! But going gluten-free was the healthiest choice I’ve ever made. There’s more to life than wheat and there’s plenty of wheat-free treats out there — including gluten-free beer! Good luck with everything.

  12. Thank you, Dimity. I’ve had varying levels of depression over the years, sometimes terrible, sometimes almost nonexistent. I’ve tried to stay away from Rx unless it was severe. Well, now I’ve been struggling sporadically for over a year if I’m being completely honest, but the past few weeks have been worse. I’m holding it together when things are going smoothly, but it is really easy for my mood to sour. Yeah work is stressful and I have a challenging child, but that’s nothing new. I’m taking deep breaths, getting my training in, but it’s not cutting it. I may try the cleanse, but I’m coming around to the idea of trying a low dose of medication.
    So, I appreciate your honesty. It’s nice to know there are other fierce mamas out there with similar challenges.

  13. Thank you for being willing to put it out there. Depression is hard, and I hear you on not wanting to label. But you are where you are, and you sound like you have made decisions (hard to do when in a funk!) and are taking action. Whether the cleanse works miracles for you or not, you are taking action and that is a big deal. Cheering for you with big ol’ fashioned cheerleader pom poms here to the west of you! PS If no sugar means honey is still legal, I have an awesome 5 minute no bake chocolate/PB/other stuff bar that is dairy free, gluten free, all that good stuff free that I can share!!!

  14. Thanks for sharing – always good to hear from you all the other mamas – we are not alone. Totally non running related – but I know (but often forget) – that I feel better/grounded/whatever the term when I have a good book to read or a series of podcasts to listen to or a series to watch. Gone Girl is a great escape, Jennifer Weiner books, any mystery series, Breaking Bad sucks you in, Bunheads and Drop Dead Diva are fun summer shows, and older shows like X-Files or Ally McNeal can take you away for a bit. Keep in touch and be well.

  15. Hey Dimity–I just read this post and admire you for taking control and doing your yoga. Being nice to yourself is so important. I hope it works speedily and that you get the spark back. I know exactly what you’re talking about.

    I am also so with you about the heat. Enough is enough. I’m thinking Seattle (or Canada) sound like great relocation options right now. And I am so glad school is starting. It’s one thing for me to be hot and grumpy and another for me to have to deal with my kids and having it be too hot to play outside just when we all need it the most.

    Fall is coming! The season is changing! Cool breezes ahead!

  16. hey lady :: i ran in to your post just as i was deciding a change needed to be made in me, as well. will check out the cleanse. have never felt so gross about my physical appearance, lack of training schedule, out of control daily schedule while the kids are on summer break. i’m a control freak, and the lack of has gotten me in a funk. you are such a source of inspiration. truly. i’m sure more BAMR than we know can identify with what we’re all commenting about since your post. thanks for your candor!

  17. Thanks for this post. I have been really contemplating posting about feeling this same way. My spring/summer has been a life changing few months. I love that you are willing to say you are in a depression state. Not that I want you there. I have just been thinking that as a society we feel that if we admit we are depressed we are weak. So, a lot of people hide it and never realize if they would just talk about it with others that they would be lifted up and helped and find out that many others feel that way too or have before.

    I myself right now need to find that one thing that will help me detox and start feeling better.

    THanks for being honest and sharing.

  18. Oh, Dimity, I wish I could give you a hug! Bless your heart. I love your transparency. I love that you keep going, even if it is half-hearted at times. I share some of what you are going thru – mine is for other kiddo-related things…I want to check out the detox you mentioned. When I am feeling totally off the wagon, I think about the AMR summer challenge and realize I can get 30 minutes. It’s better than nothing. Anything is better than nothing. Thank you for your post….

  19. I have few words to offer, but I’m sending you a great big hug via the internet:) Here it comes… (squeeze!!!!). You are a WONDERFUL, COURAGEOUS and STRONG woman. You WILL feel better…a little bit more each day.

  20. I don’t know that I would diagnose myself with depression, but serious work-related/financial stresses for both me and the husband, kids that seem to be extra trying, crazy hormones, and this ridiculous heat have not made me the most pleasant of people to be around and I certainly don’t like myself these days. And I’m half-heartedly training for a 10K (my 2nd) in October. I will just be happy to cross the finish line at this point.

    So hats off to you for the honesty you always put forth on this blog. And hopefully we can all hold each other up when we need it.

    I have a few more weeks of a hellish work schedule and then I’m planning on kicking it into gear with one of your “Own It!” plans. I can’t wait! And I’d love to hear some regular updates on how that detox makes you feel. I tried body for life once and it made me miserable, so I’m a little wary of such drastic changes to my diet.

  21. You’ve got this. If more people took charge of their emotional well being like you’re doing we wouldn’t have a population dependent on pharmaceuticals. As I battle the lows too I can say that a quality omega 3 supplement is my sanity saving pill. Nuts are also my favorite snack when trying to eat really clean. I hope the cleanse gets you back onto the healthy eating path. You and Grant are going to come out on the other side stronger together.

  22. I’m sorry to hear that you’re having a difficult time. Please know that so many people are supporting you with positive thoughts and well wishes. Just remember that “this, too, shall pass” and you will feel good and strong again.

  23. As challenged as you feel, I thank you for writing that refreshing post. Thank you for getting out in words what I have been feeling for months. I appreciate you taking responsibility and getting on with it. Making positive changes instead of sitting and dwelling. You have all the power in the world to be the best person you can be. You have recognized what you don’t want and that is more than 1/2 the battle. I feel your pain. I don’t know you at all but I am sending a smile and hugs your way.

  24. Dimity,

    I so could have written your post – I am training for my first full, and I am so off where I should be by now, and I am scared to pieces. Worse that I am running for a charity, so I feel like someone is counting on me to run, so I can’t give up – there is no backup plan. The running group I joined is *so much* faster than me, so even though I thought it would be inspiring, I end up feeling like the loser they all have to wait for at the end. Lately, my runs have gotten more and more spaced out – I would rather not run than feel defeated. But your post has me thinking – I need to get back out there. I still have 8 weeks. I need to attack it. Thank you for inspiring me – not just now, but for all of the time I’ve been following you. Thank you.

  25. Dimity, we are so thankful for you. So many women aren’t honest about struggles…just ignoring them and denying that they exist. You are taking the healthy route. Thank you! Thank you for gifting us with the privilege of knowing this information. We promise to do our best by you!

  26. Like so many, I can relate. I hope you can take comfort in knowing how much your work impacts in a positive way the lives of so many others and feel the love that we all have for you!! Remember, it is always darkest before dawn. Hugs and best wishes to you!

  27. as someone who knows that dark place you live in right now oh so well, i want to just gently remind you that depression isn’t something you did, or deserve. and sometimes it isn’t something that you can fight with good intentions. don’t let yourself go to far under dimity trying to fix it from the outside. sometimes the inside needs some support (and a prescription) just sayin’….wish you all the best love, my heart is with you.

    1. thank you, Amy. I am definitely smart about it–and use my doctor liberally. I definitely battle with the idea that it’s something I should be able to control because well, that’s the kind of person I am, but then I hit these walls and realize there’s no way I’m getting over them alone. xo.

      1. Dimity, I think of depression in the same way I think of my astigmatism. No one can see that I can’t see. But it’s quite a real problem whether or not its obvious to people around me. And it’s not my fault that my vision is faulty. And “trying harder” or “letting it go” or whatever isn’t going to make me see any better. So, I wear glasses or contacts and that helps. Doesn’t fix it, but who would tell me not to wear a prescription when it allows me to see?

        Anyway, I like to use that analogy when people around me forget that the heart of this issue is medical, not moral. Remember that the next time you feel guilty about how you are feeling.

        Take good care.

  28. Oh, Dimity. I love your honesty and willingness to share this with all of us. I met you at the Zooma Annapolis (Okay, I stalked you a little and I may think my picture with you is one of my coolest running treasures) and you just radiated with kindness and goodness. We moms have so much on our plates…it is hard not to get beat down every so often. Take good care of yourself and know that you are loved and that all of us support you and thank you for all you have given to us. Now you need to take care of you. Get to it, shorty.

  29. Wish I lived closer so I could give you a huge hug and then sit down for a long chat. I have felt “the slog” before and it is painful. But I also know it feels good to have a plan. Thinking of you and hoping you find peace soon. Miss you lots.

  30. Dimity
    I come back to this blog and podcast and your books not because you have it all together, but because you are real and your life is not perfect. I literally would not be running right now if it weren’t for the wisdom and comraderie that you bring to the table. I am so, so sorry that the weight of the world feels as if it’s on your shoulders, but I thank you for being real and transparent… I hope the start of the school year is a fresh start for you as well. Hang in there.

    1. thank you, Cathy…school feels like my savior right now. 48 hours and counting (but who is counting?)! glad you’re running and glad we could get you there. xo

  31. Last summer I lost a grandmother as a cousin buried her newborn. This summer, I lost my other grandmother and a 40 yr old cousin (my favorite cousin). And as of today, I’m waiting for the results of a biopsy for breast cancer.

    I run to reclaim my normal.

    1. Paige, so sorry to hear you’ve been through such a rough patch. Hoping you have good news–and keep your good attitude no matter what. xo.

  32. Thanks for sharing Dimity. We all struggle at some point, it can be hard to remember that we don’t struggle alone. Kudos for trying something new to get to a better place.

  33. Dimity…I am so sorry you are not in the best of place right now…I think you are pretty brave to post this and it shows that you are taking control of the situation…if I can offer an advice from someone who has too much experience with this..I think you should get a blood test to have your level of both estrogen and progesterone checked..I am betting on progesterone being too low…
    if it is…I strongly recommend you go with BHRT. {you can email me anytime if you want to talk about that. like I said I have too much experience with this.} hang in there.

  34. yoga breathing saves lives, i am certain. you’re definitely not alone in how you feel… you and sarah were so inspiring during the retreat. you tuly made an impression on me that has helped me rise above my doldrums. i think pulling the covers over your head for a day or two or three (preferably with a flashlight and good book) is healthy! if all else fails, breakfast for dinner! there’s just something about that puts everyone in a good mood. this advice coming from a woman with no job (i’m still trying to decide what i want to be) and no children and a husband who doesn’t like pancakes. uff da! ps loving ‘train like a mother’ very useful as i train for my marathon

    1. thanks, sherri. and I laughed at your breakfast for dinner: a staple around here. at least once a week, if not more. (gluten-free pancakes, anyone?)

  35. Dimity,
    As a fellow Coloradan, I can tell you that it is not just you who feels the weight of this summer on her heart. It has been a heinous summer in so many sad ways and for the weepy prone, it has been especially hard. Between the excessive and relentless heat, the horrible fires, and the Aurora shootings (not to mention personal stresses: My dad was diagnosed with a very rare leukemia on the heels of some other devastating family news a few weeks ago.), it just feels like there is not a whole lot of positivity to be had.

    It sounds like you are on the right path. I wish you continued strength.

    1. Thank you very much…I know, this summer has been very trying for our lovely ‘rado. Lord knows, I love–and need–the sun, but it feels relentless. Funny, though, today–today, when this post went live–it was cloudy and 75 and I wore jeans for the first time in months. I’m taking it as a sign. xo.

  36. HOLY COW — YOU SERIOUSLY ARE LIVING MY WEEK AS WELL! Left leg issues and all! Ahhh…sometimes it’s good to know your aren’t alone. After getting hurt from running…which seems to be occur 1x a year — I’ve had to pull out from what would have been my first marathon in October. I put in 76 miles in 20 days in July, but since July 20th, I’ve only ran 9 — so I’m thinking it’s back to the drawing board. Anyways, thank you for putting into words what you have been feeling — it helps to know that other mother runners out there have their own personal hells that we each HAVE to deal with at some point.

    I might have to check out your running retreats after my husband finishes his MBA in May 2014 — until then, I’m pretty much stuck at home.


  37. I did something similar at the beginning of the summer. I did the prepatory week like you described. By the 3rd day I had no energy and an excruciating headache. My mood was a consistent middle – not too happy, not too savor mad. But by the 5th day, everything improved. I started sleeping better, my energy returned, and I felt *light*. After the first two weeks, I merged to a diet of unprocessed food, and healthy cooking. I felt great! But you’re right, a life without chocolate and red wine is not worth living, so I cheat occasionally, but overall, it’s not that hard once you get over the sugar/carbonation/caffeine/salt cravings.

    1. Good to know. Thanks, Linda. Today–the first day–I was crazy hungry, but I can already feel the edge coming off. Like I’m happy with a slice of cantelope for dessert. We’ll see how long that lasts, but it felt good today.

  38. thank you for sharing this as I too am going thru similar emotions right now. It’s good to know I am not alone in this crazy journey! I want to know though, just how to give up that coke zero and ice cream sandwiches as that might throw me further down that hole!? (sigh) I know it would make the difference though, so I am taking your post as inspiration. Thanks and keep us posted on the cleanse!

  39. Dimity–Kudos to you for recognizing your situation, and for taking the steps you need to take care of yourself. I’m so glad you are already feeling a bit lighter. Best of luck on this road to recovery!

  40. Dimity, Thank you for this post. I battle with depression as well. I know it runs in my family so I self medicate with exercise. Some days are harder than others but it’s nice to know I’m not alone.

  41. At the pace at which you live your life, these “downs” are bound to happen. I know- I live life virtually the same way and tend to fall into very similar pits. Recognize it for what it is and don’t let it define you. But try to rest and don’t beat yourself up for not training. The break will do you good. You have a whole tribe full of love and support, sending you healing thoughts, vibes and prayers. 🙂

  42. So many of us have these slow-moving earthquakes building up inside. It sucks. A lot. And not just for us, but for our families too. Running makes a huge difference for me. It keeps my baseline up.

    Hitting the mid-40s mark has made it a bit harder on my moods. I’m curious to see how the cleanse works for you. And if it only helps a little, just remember, there is always better living through chemistry (in case you haven’t tried that route).

  43. Dimity,

    You have encouraged me so much during my 1st half. I saw you as a force that could not be taken down.. We all have our days. I’ve had a week from hell and all I can think about is Adam, in 130 degree weather with 4-5 hours of sleep and still continue to run. That’s what keeps him sane. This deployment has taken a toll…. Keep your head up and all will work out. Find the motivation within you and run with it!! Good luck in all that you set for yourself! GO BAMR!!!!

  44. I think we’ve all been there, Dimity, in one way or another. As many of the previous commenters have told you, by sharing this, you’re helping someone else. Many someone elses, in fact.

    Your journey back is ours. We’re with you. Quinoa and all. xo

  45. Tears!! You’ve always been an inspiration, but this post is especially admirable. I have mixed emotions, reading it. I feel sad that you are in this relatable-to-me place, but selfishly-refreshed by your honesty and vulnerability. You know it’s your BAMR self that will bring you out of this and on to more great things 🙂 Praying you feel the love and encouragement of the other mother runners and that it gives you strength and helps you remember all of the amazingness that you have been, are, and will be!! <3

  46. Dimity – your honesty and vulnerability of being honest with yourself is inspiring. One of the most important reasons why I have to check in with this site everyday is because both you and Sarah are REAL people. Unfortunatly because we are REAL it means that our lives aren’t perfect. That has helped me to stick with my goals and when things don’t turn out the way I planned I know that the “tribe” has gone through is going through the same thing. Hang in there, way to set new goals and know that you have a cheering squad behind you even when it feels like you don’t.

  47. Thank you for being so honest about your experiences. This summer has been rough for me as well and I finally feel like I am starting to come out of it. I wish you success with your upcoming changes. I could give up Peanut Butter M&Ms but take away my Little Debbie Nutty Bars and I might lose it…;)

  48. My undiagnosed gluten allergy caused my depression. When I finally went gluten free, my brain fog cleared, I had more energy, and I was pain free. Maybe that will be the magic cure for you too. Sadly, it would mean giving up beer but not peanut M&Ms, so silver lining. I hope you find peace.

  49. Thank you for your honesty. I’ve been struggling too, I’ve said I wish my 8am self could control my 8pm self. You’ve got this and continue to be an inspiration!!

  50. Thank you for your honesty & openness, that allow some of us to recognize we are struggling, that its okay and possibly, a way to get up.

  51. Thank you for this wonderful post! I feel so guilty when I’m bummed out & cranky in the summer (we’re supposed to save those feelings for winter…right?). Glad to hear super women like yourself experience it as well. Hang in there & keep on rockin on!

  52. Thanks for the honesty that a lot of us can relate to. Kudos for identifying and working towards change. I love the quote at the beginning.

  53. Thank you so much for putting this out there, Dimity. I have grown to care for you so much through reading the books and following RLAM on Facebook, Twitter, and here with your posts, and I wish I could make it all better. But you sound like you have your own plan and you will come out of this on the other side, stronger and wiser. I will be thinking about you and sending you all good thoughts.

  54. First of all, I just had a 6 hour drive back and forth to New York from Vermont and took the opportunity to catch up on your podcasts. They made the drive almost pleasurable! I was laughing out loud for much of it. Now to the cleanse…I felt the same way after the New Year and bought the cleanse on a whim late one night from Gilt group. I was training for Boston at the same time and quickly discovered that it is not recommended to do this cleanse if you are exercising or training. The ‘Clean Team” was pretty adamant that it was not a good idea. Just wanted to give you the heads up, as I know you are in training mode. Not to discourage you, but I think you can still take many of the benefits of the cleanse, but still do your own version with some additional calories. Lastly, remember–this too shall pass.

  55. We went paleo over a year ago -no dairy, grains, legumes, processed foods- and have never looked back. Yes, we have treats now and then but every major health issue we as a fmaily were experiencing have virtually disappeared. Depression, Crohn’s disease, BP issues, weight that wouldn’t budge, sleep probs…gone! Good luck!

  56. Dimity —

    Thank you so much for sharing what you are going through and being such an inspiration to all of us. I recently had the good fortune to meet a woman who knows you (discovered through my revelation of just how much I love RLAM/AMR)and she confirmed what I’ve always suspected in reading your writing — you’re a wonderful person. I have no doubts that you’ll get through this as you make these changes and take care of yourself.

  57. Thanks for sharing this. Putting your vulnerability out there must be tough – but we’ve all been there to some degree. Seeing you taking charge gives me hope for those tough times myself! Glad to see you have an attack plan going forward! can’t wait to hear how things go! 🙂

  58. Dimity – I’m so thankful I found this blog and another honest (and human!) mama. That undertow takes so many of us under, and the best medicine is knowing we’re not the only ones.

    Good luck with the cleanse. Let us know if you discover anything delicious. I’m thinking mine will include many spinach and cucumber based smoothies … 🙂

  59. Thanks Dimity for calling out loudly what so many of us try to muffle. Life can hit you below the kneecaps and you are doing something positive about it. An inspiration and I loved the vulnerability.

  60. What a great post. Thank you for sharing your heart and for being so real- there is such a lack of that these days. My husband and I are on a similar journey so that part made me laugh. We aren’t doing a big plan but we are cutting back on caffeine and any junk. As I’ve taken things away it has helped how I feel from the inside out. I’m so encouraged how you’re taking ownership and making changes- I’m trying to do that same! I recently started yoga again because of your online encouragement for similar reasons- so again thank you!

  61. OMG I read your post, which I look to daily for inspiration, comfort, and laughs and felt like you had just read my mind and then said it out loud!! I am so with you girl, on all points! Trying to get my mojo back to finish my training for a September half feels like crawling uphill on ice! But, I’m not done trying and I know you won’t give up either! Maybe I need to do the cleanse/detox you were talking about? I am not sure what the answer is, but I am constantly looking for re-motivation and encouragement from multiple sources! I am sure that I will snap out of this eventually, but will it be too late for my half – who knows? Good luck Dimity – I’m pulling for ya!

  62. Dimity,
    Thanks for the honesty and vulnerability in this post. You keep it real for the rest of us and remind us that it’s OK to have a down time. Hoping the cleanse works well and puts some pep back into your step!

  63. Dimity:

    I was so moved by your post. I, too, suffer from depression from time to time. When it hits, I feel like I am holding it together with scotch tape and bailing wire. Fatigue… check. Displaced anger… check. Crying jags… check. Feeling like I was in a hole so deep I couldn’t climb out… CHECK! I take solace in the knowledge that just as it comes, with a little work it will go (just like my pesky ITB issues). It is only a part of who I am and I am stronger than the depression… as are you.

    I am a new runner (2 yrs now) and wish that I had discovered the mental health benefits of running much earlier in life. I am grateful for running and for your books, blog and podcasts (shout to to SBS as well). I am training for my first 1/2 marathon and having a crisis of confidence myself.

    You are brave for posting this… or should I say “badass?”

    On you go… all the best.


    1. Dimity…

      I am so touched and encouraged by what you shared. Encouraged may seem like an odd choice of words, but it helps to see others in low places, planning their climb out. I’ve been in a very low, scary place for a few weeks. I have not been able to run for 6 weeks due to achilles injury and am still on the sidelines. As running is a key piece in my “keep it together” puzzle, I’ve been trying to take care of myself in other ways, both physically and mentally. I’ve decided this is the summer of self care… and am doing the rehab (to the letter!), getting enough sleep, eating well, getting outside and basically, trying to be kind to myself.

      Desiree – sounds like you and I have a similar history and I totally relate to how you describe depression. Be strong and good to yourself. I feel like I want to give you a hug.

      Wishing all the AMRs the strength to believe in themselves and reach out when they need it. No judgment amongst us.

  64. Thanks for your post! I SO feel your emotions. After a very tough week I just had a weekend like that. Went to bed on Friday by 7 and didn’t get out of my pajamas until Sunday afternoon. Sometimes you just have to stop and breathe. Keep on keepin’ on – you’re an inspiration for that! Good luck with your cleanse!

  65. Your post has ellicited so many comments that show that we are never alone throughout our low periods. My thoughts are with you as you make your way back to peace and happiness.

  66. Dimity – like so many other, thank you for this post. I have been in a comets slump the last month as my mother had passed away. Even trying to run a little had added so much stress. So last week I made the decision to recharge and recommit. I started to run without the watch (just as I did when I first started running). It was so liberating and made me remember why I started running in the first place. I still need to get the miles in as I am running the half in September. I have taken a look at my goals and adjusted them a bit though. Thanks for the post, Dimity! Good luck with your cleanse!

  67. Dimity, I am in that same hole …feel like I am hanging on the edge by my fingernails at the mo, but, like you, I am going to take some responsibility, I know I am the only one to pull myself out….I just feel like everything is a bit of a struggle, maybe now the kids are back at school we can all get back into some sort of routine, that always helps! 🙂 You KNOW you will get through this, just hang in there. 🙂

    Dawn xxx

  68. Thank you for being vulnerable. I believe we are strong precisely when we allow ourselves to be vulnerable. I would place bets that you have just put into words what many of us are feeling. I hope you posts a follow up in a couple weeks. The tribe is walking with you!

  69. Thank you for your honesty, as always. It’s amazing how sharing how you really feel can help you down the path to health. I too came back from the reTREAT zapped and strapped, zero time for exercise all week.

    Best of luck and tons of support through your cleanse and congrats on the GREAT decision to do the aqua bike and skip the run.

    Remember the power, strength and support we all felt one short week ago? Tap into that, I’m trying to too.
    Lots of love to one of my favorite BAMRs,

  70. OHHH THANK YOU FOR THIS POST. I have been in this spot for way too long it seems. I just can’t get motivated. Nothing seems right, nothing feels right. I am usually very outgoing always ready to try something new, go to places, etc. but lately the sofa or my bed seems to be the most inviting.
    I hope you keep us posted on how the cleansing goes! It sounds interesting.
    Thank you for sharing your feelings! Good luck with the cleansing! YOU CAN DO IT just remember you are a BAMR!

  71. Thank you for sharing what you are going through Dimity. You are inspirational, even (or maybe especially) when sharing your challenges.

    I’m interested to hear how the cleanse works out for you!

  72. Thank you so much for your brutal honesty. I too have had a similar time of late and am trying best to navigate how the make the changes. Dropped dairy, and I can tell a difference there. Nursing a back injury, which is keeping me from running for now, but reclaiming control where I can. Dim, know this sisterhood is with you!

  73. kudos for recognizing what’s going on and doing what you have to do to take care of you. And to have Grant do the 3 week program with you – it’s good to have that kind of support. Here’s to a fresh start. Take good care. xox

  74. Smart smart thing to do, Dimity! In three weeks you’ll be over the sugar high/low chase, the worst of the wheat inflammation….you may surprise yourself and not go back to all the things you now can’t imagine living without. Or you may be like me and need to remind yourself a zillion times with recurrent inflammatory episodes! It’s taken me about three years to admit to myself that I overall feel a LOT better without most of those things most of the time. And as for Aquabike: been there, proudly wear that T-shirt, after solidly breaking my foot (not a stress fracture!) two weeks before my first half IM. It made it a LOT easier to put some effort into the bike leg. And I learned a ton about race pacing that day.
    Congratulations on taking such a big step in the right direction with your cleanse!

    1. Hey Kim–We’re actually not buying the added stuff; just have the book and most everything else you can get at a natural food store. More work, but I agree: too much $$.

      1. I had the same thought…but can’t find the book. Do you have a recommendation for finding it (or something similar). I’m in desperate need of a mind and body detox.

  75. Thanks for sharing. Had a similar week when I realized how far behind I am on my marathon training, which is exactly why I was hesitant to sign up for a 3rd. Regrouping and figured out a plan that should still get me there. I detoxed eight months ago and never went back to milk, love unsweetened vanilla almond milk. Amazing how little diet changes make a big difference. Also a big fan of Vega smoothie powder. I keep thinking of all those goals from last weekend, hoping their collective energy gets me across that finish line.

  76. You have inspired so many mother runners now we can inspire you.
    It won’t last forever, don’t give up, you can do it! Choosing something different that gives you a brake from running will give you time to miss it and then you will be excited again. I admire you for sharing these challenges, remember most of us love running b/c it makes facing them easier.

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