Thomas' road to recovery after attempted suicides and a battle with mental health

Local lad Thomas Dunning is on the road to recovery at 2018's Asda Foundation City of Lincoln 10K after losing seven stone and turning his mental health around.

Thomas Dunning, 27, who has lived in Lincoln from the age of four, has lost seven stone in eight months in preparation for his Asda Foundation City of Lincoln 10K where he is determined to spread awareness about mental health issues.

On Sunday 1st July, Thomas will be among thousands of runners excited to take on the long-anticipated and sold out Asda Foundation City of Lincoln 10K.

Seven stone lighter than when he started training, Thomas hopes that he can use the popular road running event as a platform to raise awareness about mental health issues and share his past experiences with others suffering from mental health conditions.

Speaking to Run For All, Thomas said: “I went through hell when I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. People decided to cyber bully me just because I told them about my diagnosis.

“Psychosis ensued countless times, albeit from bullying or not, and it would usually end in me attempting to take my life though various means. Thankfully they all failed.

“I have since focused on running and used it as my form of continual therapy - I am reaping the benefits. Thanks to running, I have lost seven stone in eight months – dropping from 23 and a half stone to 16.

“I’m feeling really good and am now a brand ambassador for the activewear company, SUNDRIED.”

Running was a key component leading to Thomas’ recovery. He hopes that others discover the many mental benefits to running.

“I believe that physical exercise is the best way to help with mental health; where you can just put your headphones in, music on, lace up the trainers and get out to follow the path wherever it may take you” said Thomas.

“When you’re in that running bubble, it’s just incredible to be outside, doing what you enjoy and venting all built up stresses and strains.”

On his road to recovery, Thomas was keen to help others suffering from mental health issues. He decided to set up a blog where people could discuss their problems and share past experiences.

“We need to raise awareness to mental health because I feel as if mental health is still a taboo subject which it shouldn’t be, especially when you consider that it’s as common to one in four people with a diagnosable illness.

“The more we talk about mental health, the more we remove the stigma associated with it and thus helps people to realise it’s okay to not be okay.

“It’s important to talk to someone before it gets too late.”

Thomas hopes that his blog and website will provide a platform for people speak freely about their mental health and not be ashamed to seek help.

“Whilst I was struggling, the best thing I did to control my illnesses was meeting people with the same issues. It made me feel human and socially accepted again. That’s the general message I’m trying to get across with the website and blog.

“It’s okay to not be okay and let’s break down the walls of mental health stigma.

As a proud local Lincoln lad, Thomas, is looking forward to running the Asda Foundation City of Lincoln 10K – now in its 22nd year running.

“I’ve ran this numerous times and although I’ve lived in Lincoln most of my life, it’s amazing to run through the cathedral quarter and take in all the sights.

“The local support is amazing and there is an overwhelming sense of support amongst all those taking part.

“This is my first race returning from two months of rest due to a significant ankle injury and I cannot wait to get back into it!”

Check out our remaining 10K series of 2018 with events in York, Nottingham, Leicester, Bury and Sheffield to look forward to!

Back to top