Thought I'd check in and provide an update on the marathon training, as a few of you have asked on other platforms and I received a number of lovely PMs when I took a brief hiatus from the site the other week.
Been an up and down time recently. When tragic events affect your mental health quite markedly, it can be difficult not to spiral. There is also a feeling of great guilt in your mental well-being having been changed by something like the tragedy at Grenfell tower. That is to say, I have not been personally, tangibly affected by the tragedy, and people have lost their lives and their homes, so why do I have any right to be emotionally affected? It is difficult to come to terms with that guilt.
On a brighter note, the training continues in earnest for my marathon (Athens, in November, to raise money for MIND). Yesterday evening I found a running track near Catford and paid the princely sum of £2.70 to use it, with the aim of smashing my 5km PB. As anyone who has trained for a marathon before will surely know, mixing up the routine is key: although longer runs, and hill runs, are paramount, it's important to throw in some shorter, more explosive workouts too. I was dead pleased with my time, which might not look much on the face of it, but for someone still flirting with 15.5 stone, is decent enough.
Youth turnout 72% - got that wrong. Gummer holds Ipswich - got that wrong. UKIP swing almost exclusively to Tories - got that wrong. My local Labour candidate loses ground (actually gained another 12% of the vote) - got that wrong. Labour would lose seats - got that wrong. Tories would gain seats - got that wrong.
Theresa May has said she will rip up some human rights laws if they "stop us" from tackling terrorism.
Speaking on the election campaign trail, the Prime Minister told supporters she would change any laws that got in the way of preventing jihadis from launching attacks in Britain.
Mrs May said: "As we see the threat changing, evolving becoming a more complex threat, we need to make sure that our police and security and intelligence agencies have the powers they need.
"I mean longer prison sentences for people convicted of terrorist offences. I mean making it easier for the authorities to deport foreign terrorist suspects back to their own countries.
"And I mean doing more to restrict the freedom and the movements of terrorist suspects when we have enough evidence to know they are a threat, but not enough evidence to prosecute them in full in court.
"And if our human rights laws stop us from doing it, we will change the laws so we can do it.
"If I am elected as Prime Minister on Thursday, that work begins on Friday."
There are 500 current terrorism investigations, involving 3,000 current subjects of interest. A small number of the highest priority investigations involve current attack planning, and these investigations command a significant proportion of our resource. The remainder of our investigations focus on other activities relating to active support or facilitation of terrorism.
Khuram Shazad Butt was known to the police and MI5. However, there was no intelligence to suggest that this attack was being planned and the investigation had been prioritised accordingly. The other named man, Rachid Redouane, was not known.
Geezers, fellas, blokes, chaps, boys, lads. Why is it that some of us feel it's so hard to talk about mental health?
I'm confident that there is a causality at play, between some of these tragic cases of suicide and not feeling able to discuss the issues at hand. Simplistic, perhaps, but guys tend not to want to admit they might have a problem, and don't seek professional help. Just like many physical illnesses, catching things early could be life-saving. If, as a society, we were more informed and felt more at ease discussing mental health, the likelihood of early diagnosis and the subsequent appropriate treatment would rise significantly.
So sod the (unwarranted) fear of bullsh!t societal emasculation, and get talking about it more. I guarantee that your mates, family, co-workers and acquaintances will respect you as profoundly brave if you do.
I've suffered from depression, and anxiety, and addiction, but I'm lucky. Millions of others haven't been able to get access to treatment nor have they felt able to openly discuss their struggles.
As many of you know through my blog, which I've shared on here ad nauseum, I want to do something to help, however little it might be. So, in November, I'm running a really bloody tough marathon in Athens (21km are uphill) to raise money for Mind, the mental health charity.
If you're feeling really generous, please donate, however little the amount. If not, no worries, but I implore you to do everything you can to help break the stigmas attached with mental illness - chiefly: keep talking.