“On average, Americans with major mental illness die 14 to 32 years earlier than the general population.”
Every time I hear it, I’m alarmed. Contrary to popular belief, most people with serious mental illness do not die from suicide or violence. They die from the same conditions as those without serious mental illness – cancer, heart disease, diabetes.
The room was packed at the Primary Care Development Corporation’s (PCDC)* Primary Care Innovation Circle.
More than 200 health care executives, providers, community-based agency leaders and practitioners assembled to listen to panelists address the most audacious of tasks: the fate of health care in the United States.
This year, as my wife and I celebrated our 25th anniversary, I could not help but reflect on how fortunate I am that our relationship has thrived despite both the normal stressors of life as well as the unexpected and more challenging curveballs one can’t anticipate in life.
We often naively believe that our partner relationships will always remain the same. Unfortunately, they don’t.
I started running when I was 8. This was right around the time that my parents divorced and my world changed in numerous ways.
I was having anxiety attacks and battling depression. I was having trouble concentrating at school. When I started running, I couldn’t tell you why I was doing it, I just felt compelled. When an anxiety attack surfaced, I put on my shoes and headed out the door.
In August 2014, I got my first road bike.
It took several attempts to feel confident about “clipping in” and managing all the gears. I was advised that you aren’t a real cyclist until you’ve fallen off at least 10 times. This hurt. However, once I got the hang of it – eventually – I loved being out on my bike.
Exercise benefits both our mind and our body. I have been a runner for 20 years, running in everything from 5Ks to marathons. I have run in races all over the world. It is common for the uninitiated to ask a simple question. Why? What is it that motivates me to get out of bed at “0-dark thirty” – as one of my running partners calls it – to put on my running shoes and propel my body? What evidence could be compelling enough to convince even the most sedentary among us to give exercise a try? Exercise’s health benefits are well documented, particularly regarding cardiovascular health. What is less well known, however, are the cognitive benefits, especially as we…