I took my soul back from a hill

Let me start by saying I’m not asking for your sympathy or well wishes. I just want to tell a story which might bring hope to or inspire others. Those of you who know me know I’m coming back after a pretty serious mental breakdown a couple of years back. This is an open reflection of the story so far

It happened when I was on top of my game physically - I’d never been fitter or healthier and whilst I wasn’t gonna be challenging anyone for a place on a pro team I was doing pretty well!

I had set myself the task of one Everest a month for a year - I was into my sixth and that’s when it all went quite a bit wrong.

It started with an Everest attempt on a local hill. The day had started badly. Had a mechanical early on and also needed a battery change on my power meter - that wouldn’t have been a problem except the battery packaging was a complete arse to get into and took a lot of time.

Then it rained and got incredibly cold. I abandoned. I was ok! Or so I thought

The next day I woke - and I couldn’t get out of bed. I was scared I was paranoid the whole world was out to get me and I didn’t have a clue why - just that they were. I was unable to cope - with anything!
I went on like this for about a month - some days I could muster the strength and will to go to work - other times I couldn’t.
I never thought about suicide in detail a I didn’t have a plan on how I’d go - but I did think to myself ‘who would miss me if I wasn’t around. That’s dark for a husband and a dad with 3 kids

Eventually my wife - who is always right - got me to go to the doctor - they suggested meds - I declined but a week later went back and said yes please.

Things evened out - I was getting things back together. Covid happened and that was tough for a lot of people I know but for me it gave me a chance to stop and breathe. I couldn’t work - schools weren’t open so my client base a a a piano teacher was non existent

Covid forced a change of job - and I did what I needed to to put food on the table - and then landed a great job with a supportive company!

I started training seriously again having promised my mate I’d do the dragon ride with him. We did that a couple of weeks back and it was amazing.

So I was driving to an event one day and following satnav. It took me to a hill - as I drove down I thought ‘ I recognise this’. And sure enough it was that hill.

Now this hill I realise isn’t the main reason for my breakdown but to me it was a symbol of where I had been to where I am now

So last Sunday I rode out to that hill and I smashed that MF - I mean I’m not as strong as I used to be but I gave that everything I had - i left nothing there - and literally threw up at the top!

It’s a bit like Goggins - taking souls - I’m too nice to be that competitive with peope - but hills are fair game in my book.
If Goggins had written this last part this is how I think he’d have written it -

Yeah - ‘that hill kicked me back then - it kicked me real hard. But I came back and I said ‘yeah that hurt but I’m still here motherfu@&4 -I’m still here come get me’

‘Why do we fall - so we can learn how to get back up again’ - Albert The Butler

I’m finally in a place to reduce the meds and hopefully kick them completely but we will see -

So if you’ve had setbacks know you’re not the only one. We all do. I struggle and battle with junk food (see another recent post of mine where I try to justify some of them :joy::joy::joy:) but I do try to be the best me I can be! I’m grateful to the community here and ones that came before. Find the right people to be in your foxhole - who have your back but will also tell you when you’re being a complete bellend (see wife above).

Stay hard! Peace and Love


Thank you for sharing your story, @Ewan - well done :slight_smile:

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Love reading this, @Ewan. You’re a good man and a great friend. I’, glad things are on the up for you :slight_smile:

Great story @Ewan - thank you so much for sharing.

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Thats an amazing story @Ewan, thank you so much for sharing.

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Awesome @Ewan for one thing it was truly great to see you back on the bike. Mental health is such a big thing and men are the worst for not talking openly about things. I’ve been to the edge of the cliff and nearly taken that next step but thankfully for me something triggered in me and it got me to book in to see the Dr’s when I got home. Meds and then divorce ultimately got me back to a better place. Then to meet my partner and us having a daughter she is also the one that will tell me to get out for a ride or run when she notices the signs.

Your story has made me realise I haven’t yet revisited my hill or I should say Mountain as it was Snowdon. I don’t know if I have been avoiding it subconsciously or not but I do think I need to face that at some point.

I also have to say I’m pissed off at you completing the Dragon Ride before me lol. I should have risen it last year but injury has stopped my riding and I am only just starting to get some miles in again slowly. Perhaps I need to look at doing the Dragons Back run. Or even running Ultra Trail Snowdon next year to kill the Snowdon Mountain.

It is so good to hear your in a better place now man.


I@kevstorr i know you’ve struggled too

it’s good to see you still kicking it back!

I’m signed up for the dragon again next year. Got one mate already going with - come hop on the train - we’ll smash it bruv!

I appreciate your kind words - mental health is recovering and the legs are getting there. I’m just a normal guy who probably pushes a bit too hard sometimes - but you gotta do that to find out who you are right?

So yeah - go get snowdon back - and if you need someone to go with just holler and we can set that up. Would be great to meet kevdaledge!


Great work @Ewan. That’s maybe the hardest sportive in the UK.

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