In 2010, the loss of the journalist’s father changed his life completely. Rushing to be at his father Hywel’s bedside, Huw was told by the consultant that his father had pancreatic and liver cancer, with his impending death. This sudden and tragic event naturally took a toll on Huw, who felt he had come to terms with his loss and grief. But in reality, Huw was struggling mentally and physically, gaining more and more weight to cope with his distress.
“It was combined with the growing feeling that I hadn’t properly accepted the loss of my father.”
Thinking back to this time in his life, Huw realizes that he was in a “suitable type of depression”, which has become “rather overwhelming”.
Speaking to The Times, Huw candidly admitted he felt helpless at the time, not knowing what he could do to improve his physical or mental health.
“The bottom line was when I had to take a train from Paddington back to Wales. I had to take this train because I was turning a bit and I had to really run.
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“When I walked in I honestly thought I was going to breathe out. I couldn’t breathe. I was sweating profusely. I was soaked in sweat and I was like, “What kind of state are you in?”
“I was 16th and a half. I thought, ‘Oh my God.’ And then my mom said, “Well, you know your dad weighed 16½ st. And I really thought, ‘Oh my God.’ It started to sound the alarm bells. “
It was Huw’s wife who came up with a solution for the reporter and soon Huw got help from welterweight champion Clinton McKenzie.
Against the idea of boxing at the start, since he admitted that he could “do more harm to [his] tongue only with fists, ”Huw slowly and steadily got into shape.
Training three mornings a week, Huw threw three stones, which caught the attention of viewers with bright eyes who complimented him on his slim appearance.
Although he had been through the ordeals of the depression, Huw reported to The Times that he was now “totally” lifted. “It’s epiphany, if you will. It was kind of a depression about how I felt and where I felt, about my dad and everything, ”Huw said.
“I felt it had become quite overwhelming. The worst part was that I felt there was nothing I could do about anything. I felt a little helpless. But being in good physical shape means being more robust mentally. This is when you can increase your performance.
Defending his mental and physical health issues, Huw was sadly struck by a case of pneumonia linked to Covid-19, causing his lungs to swell.
Left with “excruciatingly sore” limbs and a lack of smell, Huw took three weeks off to recover and rest.
Signs of depression
The mental health charity Mind defines depression as “a bad mood that lasts a long time and affects your daily life.” Symptoms can vary from person to person, but common symptoms include fatigue, restlessness, irritability, and a loss of interest in activities that you once found enjoyable.
Like Huw, depression can come on gradually, so it can be hard to notice that something is wrong. Many people try to manage their symptoms on their own, but this can lead to even more serious depression.
If you have symptoms similar to those mentioned above for two weeks or more, it is advisable to see a doctor. For a free listening service that offers confidential support from trained volunteers, individuals can contact Samaritans on 116 123, or by email [email protected] for a response within 24 hours. Alternatively, individuals can send a SHOUT SMS to 85258.