I have to admit until a few months ago I didn’t know this was a thing until the Crisis Team told me about exercise on prescription. Which as long as your GP surgery and local gym provide this service you can get for free or a reduced price 12 month access to help with mental health or long term physical conditions.
Basically you go along to your Doctors and ask to make an appointment to see the nurse about a referral in my area it is called “Take the Next Step”, in your appointment they will ask why you want to be referred such as mental health, physical health or weight. My surgery won’t refer you for weight and in my opinion unless there is a medical reason such as a specific illness or medication side effects I agree with that. Mine was obviously for mental health and the fact that when I exercise my hormones level out and I seem to be on the whole better.
I was referred with no bother and the lady from the council which owns the leisure centres in my area that runs the scheme rang. She said that unless it was for weight management I had to pay 3 months for the price of 1 which isn’t bad at all but it in my mind takes the piss. The Crisis Team agreed with me that mental health is important in fact her words were “but we need to keep you alive so your mental health is important”. I don’t often go to the Crisis Team because I am too frequently let down by them even though they are aware I have abandonment and trust issues – highlighted by themselves. The abandonment issues are weird because other than people passing away I haven’t been abandoned by anyone in my family, but the struggle with the being alone and abandoned by those I love is real.
But back to the exercise on prescription I was fairly keen to do it as I’m trying to stay off of medication as it is changing my personality for the worse and that is an observation from 00Steve not me deciding I don’t like change. I then met up with my new mental health coordinator who was pretty unimpressed at the up and down level or not level of care I have received this year. We came to the conclusion that with the amount of walking I do on the days I work plus the fact I bike on certain days a round trip of 10K that I’m hitting the exercise per day “quota”; not to mention that I become obsessive with exercise due to the Body Dysmorphic Disorder I probably should cancel my referral as it could have more of a detrimental effect than a positive one. I am due to start my DBT on the 3rd so I will learn some new coping strategies to as they put it “put in my toolkit” to help with avoidance/obsession.
I think though for some people it will be a godsend and could really help with the motivation as far as I’m aware these include classes not just the pool and the gym which could be a good motivator or for socialising (not that many people do that at the gym but I have made some lovely friends from going to Zumba classes before I got married) it is definitely worth a look though.
If you missed the last instalment of Time to Talk Tuesdays please click here.