The Marathon for “mental health”

YES !! I am running the London marathon on the 23rd of April 2017. It will be my 3rd in 4 years !!

You may have noticed the media coverage this year is , and has been focussed on “mental health” through the the charity “heads together” which is a “good” thing , aiming it towards people to “open up” about mental health, it is good to talk !! Lets reduce stigma too !! Yes yes yes …… many of us have been doing this for years also !! BUT no only getting people to talk , the importance I and others have done is to focus on the real issues and that is being able to access correct support, evidence based treatments , looking to increase better outcomes for people that have already “talked” !! because for many , it has been atrocious , very !!!

So yes , TALK ! REDUCE STIGMA , but lets not keep putting a sticky plaster on a broken leg , because it doe not work ever !

Going back to me personally , re the marathon itself , I am really looking forwards to it (although training has been difficult due to nasty virus) and I will give it my best shot , because running for such an incredible charity, Tourette’s action , gives me pleasure in knowing the money raised will really benefit those that live and care for , re support groups, support, research , and as a sufferer myself I know how difficult the syndrome can be , but it must never stand in your way EVER




What has been going on ??

Thought I would update , and blog about what has been going on in the last couple of months …

Apart from Marathon training , for the London Marathon on the 23rd of april , it has been a busy year so far in regards to Mental Health/ocd awareness.

In January I was proud to have worked alongside one of the worlds leading Bdd/OCD experts , Rob Wilson at Surrey University.

The day involved training/teaching IAPT therapists , using my lived experience, and as Rob quoted “The Encylopedia of knowledge” of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder , that I allegedly have ! The day was great , and Rob is a fantastic teacher. I hope they all went away equipped with good knowledge , so that they can help to change peoples lives for the better. What was also pleasing to hear , was Rob is keen on me becoming a therapist , which is a work in progress !

Last month I was asked to be on the panel of experts , for a debate , about taking Mental Health into the 21st century , working alongside MP. Norman Lamb, Liz Fraser (founder of Headcase) Danny Bowman, Chair from Parliament Street, lived experiences of Bdd/OCD , and Jonny Benjamin.

It was a great event and I was able to put across many aspects /knowledge/important information about OCD. It went down very well and Norman Lamb , said that he loved my input.

3 Days later !!!

I was back in London , doing a talk about OCD and Tourettes Syndrome , at the London Tourettes support group, collaborating with Liz Atkin , a world famous visual artist , which she has used as a platform of change to help her with the Compulsive Skin Picking/Dermatillomania. Liz is often seen on the Underground doing Charcoal drawings and passes them onto passengers, its also a great way of sharing awareness of the debilitating disorder. She has recently been working in Singapore. Her Presentation on the day , was incredible , and very informative. You can follow Liz on twitter @lizAtkin and her webpage is here  www.LizAtkin.Com

My talk involved sharing my lived experience of OCD and TS. and the sharing of information with those in the audience , which was followed up by a Q/A which went on for a good 30 minutes

What was so pleasing to hear, next day was the fantastic feedback I received, one person in the audience said it has been like a light switch going on , and it has given him hope and inspired him , and that you can go onto lead a great life, and don’t let TS stand in your way. “One day I want to be like ash , doing talks/presentations” I said at any time he wants to be alongside me , to do a talk , he is more than welcome

I also got the pleasure of meeting up with Jess the “tourettes superhero” she is awesome, and so was Sophia too , was lovely to meet you as well

The support group all round is fantastic , huge credit to all involved !

So that’s it really . Looking forwards to running the Marathon on the 23rd of april with the tourettes action running vest on , and the “heads together” headband , because this year its the “marathon for mental health”

Thanks for reading. Much love

Ash x x x