Kelly M's story: Exercise helps me to channel my emotions and keeps me focused

I've always been involved in sport and exercise from a young age. Throughout all the endless doses of medication, group therapy sessions, one-to-one chats with professionals and general health related interventions, exercise has been the one constant thing that has kept me feeling sane and safe.

With all the ups and downs I've had in my life, taking me through depression, alcohol and drug abuse, anorexia, anxiety and finally being diagnosed with bipolar in 2009, I've always found myself involved in some form of exercise, whether it be playing rugby, running or training in the gym. To put it simply, exercise is the BEST form of medication I have found to help me cope with mental illness.

Exercise really helps me to channel my emotions and keep me focused. I'm extremely grateful that I am able to exercise to the extent I can, as mental illness can be so utterly debilitating at times. From just a bipolar point of view, if I'm feeling high, exercise can help exhaust the nervous, uncontrollable rush of energy I would otherwise not know how to contain. If I'm feeling low, the exercise can really enhance my mood and alter my outlook on my day as a whole.