All through my late childhood and teenage years I struggled with substance abuse. The first time I got drunk I was only 9 years old and managed to sneak some liquor at a family party. I kept drinking every chance I got, making sure my parents wouldn’t find out. Soon enough that escalated and when I was 14 I started smoking marijuana. By the time I was 19 I was hooked on meth and other hard-core drugs. I wasn’t an unhappy child or anything like that, I had a loving family who always tried their best to keep me safe and happy. I was just curious. I didn’t think I was doing anything wrong, I was just experimenting like all teenagers do…
It’s all fun and games until it isn’t. At 23 I got arrested on drug-related charges. In prison, I started attending AA and NA meetings, and while the two years I spent in that cell were probably the hardest in my life, it was during those meetings where I found the motivation to turn my life around and start my path towards recovery.
Earlier this year marked my 9th anniversary of sobriety. It still feels surreal thinking about how much my life has changed, how far I’ve come since those days when I felt as if I was on the brink of disaster. Sure, it hasn’t been an easy road, but there were some things that helped me through. Exercise, jogging to be more specific, was definitely one of them. Working out is highly beneficial for addiction recovery. It will improve your overall health, it can give you a sense of accomplishment and increase your confidence, thus making the goal of sobriety feel more attainable. That’s what jogging did to me, and look at where I’m at now. Here are 6 ways jogging helped me during my recovery process and throughout sobriety, that I hope you can benefit from as well.
Body and mind benefit
Jogging, as any form of regular physical activity, can help your body combat health conditions and diseases, since it improves your body’s natural immune defenses against issues like heart disease and type-2 diabetes, even some forms of cancer. I was hesitant before starting to take on exercise. Rehab can be exhausting, especially alcohol detox and withdrawal, so when I first got out I was feeling tired all the time. Little did I know that jogging would actually give me back the energy and vitality I was missing. Jogging is also therapeutic for your mind, it can heal, increase and repair nerve connections in your brain. It can significantly improve the healing process in the areas of the brain affected by substance abuse.
During my addict days, I used to struggle with anger problems that were difficult to control. My family, friends, and colleagues had to suffer the consequences of my emotional instability when they had nothing to do with it. I still remember one specific memory that will probably stay with … Read More