Mental Health & Wellness

Dylan Kozen


     Since I was 19 I’ve faced different mental health problems. Over the last few years I’ve seen countless doctors who have all diagnosed me as a range of things. No matter the doctor or the diagnosis the answer has always been medications. When one doesn’t work they add another, there’s never just one medication. In my experience it didn’t matter the number or types of medications it was never enough, so I began to self-medicate with alcohol. Medications help mask the feelings, but with the alcohol I could forget the past for a brief period.


     So, having no other choice I start looking for cheap alternatives, something I could use every day. Not knowing where I would end up, I found myself under a barbell, and I haven’t left since. I started squatting every day. I force everything I deal with to come out for an hour to two a day. My demons and my past traumas will always be there I can’t erase my past, so I force it to come out, I turn it on the second I get under the bar, the second I set up for a heavy pull. I found that when I put myself in that place under a heavy bar I release everything I’ve ever held on to every day. I don’t run from the past anymore I relive it every day in every rep and set. Doing this I’ve slowly learned that I control my emotions I can’t control how others feel, that is their problem, not mine.


     Doing this over the last few years I’ve slowly started to come off medications, getting off medications is not right for everyone it took a lot of time and doctors guidance. Use fitness not only for your physical health but for your mental health. If you face your demons first thing in the morning nothing you face the rest of the day will seem tough after that.

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