14 Comments

Taking a jog

There is much criticism of the McCanns for jogging in and around Praia da Luz.  Yes the usual nasties say they couldn’t care about looking for their daughter, so they took a jog instead.

Some parents can’t face the prospect  of  being the person who could find their missing child dead.  And to be honest the Police prefer to do the searching because if they do find the missing child and they are in fact dead, the Police will want to preserve the crime scene. Because a natural reaction of the parent may be to go and hold their child, which could and would contaminate the crime scene.  All search parties are told that if they find anything they are to report it immediately to the Police and preserve the scene and not allow others near the body.

This fear of searching by parents is highlighted in a case from Scotland where Margaret Davidson openly admits that she could not go and search out of fear for what she might find. The video can be viewed in this post about how Margaret Davidson could not bring herself to search for her missing child.  Lisa Irwin is another mother who has stated she could not search out of fear.

Kate and Gerry McCann are both Doctors, Kate McCann at the time of her daughters disappearance was a GP and would have read all the research into depression and there is a high probability that some of her patients would have suffered from depression in one form or another, whether it be mild or severe.

Doctors do NOT like to start a patient on anti-depressants unless they have to.  Doctors prefer for the patient to handle their depression without resorting to medication and will advice them of ways to help. One of the ways is exercise.  Running, jogging, even cleaning the car and doing the garden can help fight depression.

An article written for the Mayo Clinic in dealing with major depression states the following:

How does exercise help depression and anxiety?

Exercise probably helps ease depression in a number of ways, which may include:

  • Releasing feel-good brain chemicals that may ease depression (neurotransmitters and endorphins)
  • Reducing immune system chemicals that can worsen depression
  • Increasing body temperature, which may have calming effects

Exercise has many psychological and emotional benefits too. It can help you:

  • Gain confidence. Meeting exercise goals or challenges, even small ones, can boost your self-confidence. Getting in shape can also make you feel better about your appearance.
  • Take your mind off worries. Exercise is a distraction that can get you away from the cycle of negative thoughts that feed anxiety and depression.
  • Get more social interaction. Exercise may give you the chance to meet or socialize with others. Just exchanging a friendly smile or greeting as you walk around your neighborhood can help your mood.
  • Cope in a healthy way. Doing something positive to manage anxiety or depression is a healthy coping strategy. Trying to feel better by drinking alcohol, dwelling on how badly you feel, or hoping anxiety or depression will go away on its own can lead to worsening symptoms.

It also goes on to state:

Certainly running, lifting weights, playing basketball and other fitness activities that get your heart pumping can help.

Even the NHS has this to say:

Exercise can help people recover from depression and prevent them from becoming depressed in the first place.

Nobody in their right mind, could deny the fact that a missing child would lead any person to be anxious.  Nobody can deny the fact that Kate McCann and her husband would probably become depressed over the fact that their first-born was missing.

Added to the fact that from day one, people were accusing them of being involved and knowing full well what was happening in Portugal, and the way the Police were dealing with their daughters disappearance, it is hardly surprising if they suffered some form of depression, whether it be mild or major.

The last thing, I suspect Kate and Gerry McCann wanted was to be put on tranquillizers and walk around like zombies.  They had two other children that needed them and and they needed to find their daughter and remain focussed on the search for their daughter.

None of us were with the McCanns and their family in that holiday apartment, they had friends that were also trained Doctors and therefore, it is totally understandable in my opinion why they chose to go running and jogging, especially if it helped them deal with the anxiety caused by having a child missing and it helped in keeping them focussed on what they could do to highlight their daughter’s disappearance.

Mind you there are some, that would condemn the McCanns if they had not gone jogging and if they had become dependant on tranquillizers and anti-depressants.

As for searching, well let us be truthful about that, the Police were the people best to search, they had the powers to demand entry to property to search for a missing child.  Come on be realistic what were the McCanns supposed to have done? Knock on every door between Portugal and the UK and demand entry so they could physically search.  Get real.

Further Reading:

Exercise link to lower depression

Exercise and Mental Health

Exercise aids depression, say GPs

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14 comments on “Taking a jog

  1. Can’t help thinking that all this was said, a long while back, by the people accused of being paid by the McCanns.  When you turn your head away from damning others it’s clear to see though, right?  

  2. Yes this was all said ages ago, by the supporters of the McCanns, but still today people are spreading this “They didn’t care because they jogged” mantra. 

  3. Lots of people resort to some form of physical or diversionary tactics when they are under extreme stress.  I suppose the critics would sooner they’d taken to drugs or alcohol?  (Maybe something they’d relate more to…)

    The jogging might have been a red flag if they only took it up after Madeleine disappeared.  The McCanns are both seasoned joggers though.  Gerry McCann was a serious runner even when he was at university.
     
    I would say that if they were used to running long distances on a regular basis, then to stop abruptly during a period of extreme stress would be even more detrimental to their physical and mental condition.
     
    The running would help focus their minds and also tire them out probably.  How many of us just feel like going for a long walk when we are stressed?  It’s probably exactly the same thing. 

  4. Exactly Jayelles and how many of us, in times of great stress, want to be away from the advice of others or what they are doing and saying and just want to be on your own for a while.  I know at times, in stressful situations, I have walked on my own just to gather my own thoughts.

    Sometimes people mean well, but they get on your nerves and you want to be on your own.  

    Unfortunately, at times, when you say I am going for a walk, it is those that you want a break from, that tend to say, “Oh I will come with you, to keep you company”.  

    As you say, the McCanns were keen runners before Madeleine’s disappearance, you can tell from their activities during that holiday prior to Madeleine’s disappearance that sport and exercise played a crucial part in their lives and they were active people.  Even Kate was jogging on the afternoon of Madeleine’s disappearance.

    Whereas they used to run for fun, they have now turned that into running for missing people, to highlight the plight of missing children and to raise funds to find their daughter.

    The truth is Jayelles, no matter what the McCanns do, there will always be those willing to use it to bash them with.   It is like a sick internet game now being played by nothing than other than people acting as ghouls.   

    Some of them don’t give one iota for Madeleine, all they care about is bashing the parents with yet another stick.

  5. “”
    The truth is Jayelles, no matter what the McCanns do, there will always be those willing to use it to bash them with.   It is like a sick internet game now being played by nothing than other than people acting as ghouls.  “”    ……game being played by people who hate other humans.   Or worse than that, a game being played by those who stand to lose if it’s proven she was taken.    The internet hides some abhorrent shit Bren.     You’re doing a great job by, at least, bringing it to the attention of others. 

  6. Jamsandwich, the behaviour yesterday by what is supposed to be a professional profiler, was despicable, abhorrent, and reminded me of a kid having a very bad tantrum and throwing their toys out of their pram.

    Pat Brown’s behaviour yesterday, was witnessed by a whole lot of people, including journalists and MPs.  

    How she can ever call herself a professional profiler from now on, I just don’t know.  She was acting like a screaming banshee because she was blocked by someone.

    It’s twitter, people block you, get over it. It is hardly worth showing yourself up for, and that is what Pat Brown did. She showed her true colours and made a right spectacle of herself.

    I have been blocked on twitter, do I give a damn? No.  In fact I just block them myself now.  You can’t interact and debate with people like that, I just ignore them and speak over them..  They definitely are not worth conversing with, that is for sure.  Because any normal decent human being would want a child to be found alive and they wouldn’t wish any child dead.

  7. It has been said that the McCanns being the professionals they are, very quickly realised that they needed to pull themselves together, help was not forthcoming and they needed to take action,  I picture them pacing back and forth asking themselves why ?  Jogging, as Bren points out in her blog is one of the best ways of releasing the endorphines, clear the brain and help put things  in perspective for (what was to become) the mammoth journey.

  8. I can just imagine what they must have been going through.  There they were suffering the fear, the anxiety, the panic of having their daughter missing, trying to remember every little detail of that weeks holiday and to see if they could remember something or someone who was suspicious.

    Their family and friends trying to help, give advice, the Police asking questions, the language barrier, everything seeming to move slowly and as if nothing was getting done to find their daughter.  

    They were being given info, being asked for info, being given advice, trying to cope as normal as they could, no wonder they went jogging together, it must have been the only way to be on their own to try to make sense of all the thoughts they had in their heads.

    From one of those articles it talks about the benefits of exercise and listed amongst them are these:

    >  less tension, stress and mental fatigue
    > a natural energy boost
    > improved sleep
    > focus in life and motivation
    > less anger or frustration

    Now we can understand the full benefits they got when they went for those jogs.

  9. People react to traumatic situations in different ways. Some are no doubt healthier than others. 

    Evacuating stress to be able think clearly is vital, even if it requires a super-human effort and the relief is only temporary. So is remembering, somehow, that you still need to intake fluids and some food and get some rest at some point. Otherwise, you’ll be of no use whatsoever. And then you can get served more cups of tea than you can possibly consume and end up assuming their feeling of helplessness as well as your own. 

    I don’t find going for a jog bizarre at all, it  sounds like what Alan Pike would have tried to drum into them. 

  10. Yes Carana, and Alan Pike was there at 6 am on the morning of the 5th May 2007.  Kate says in her book the following:

    Having been so late back from the police station the previous evening, we’d decided to wait until morning to meet the trauma psychologist, Alan Pike.  But by this point we realized that we needed help urgently.  Just before 5am Gerry rang Craig Mayhew, the Mark Warner overseas manager, and asked if Alan would be able to come and see us.  He was at the door of our apartment by 6am.

    She then goes onto to say the following:

    Alan got us talking, encouraging us to try to think rationally about what we were saying, as we talked a lot, for several hours.  We faced our biggest fear: that Madeleine had been taken by a paedophile and killed.

    According to Kate he told them their thoughts were speculation and they didn’t know what happen and they needed to focus on positive things.  She even goes on to say how Alan advised them to be the ones to make a cup of tea but they found that difficult because of Aunt Norah was forever making tea as she just didn’t know what to do.

    Thank god they had Alan Pike because as Kate says many times he was their saviour.

  11. Bren,

    Re physical activity for a “Natural energy boost”.  This was something I only learned of recently when a friend got meningitis.  Afterwards she developed post viral fatigue syndrome and could barely get out of bed some days.  We were all susprised when her GP recommended a programme of physical exercise.  It seemed like a contradiction in terms to go walking or swimming when you only wanted to go to sleep, but it worked!  Something to do with hormones and chemical released when you exercise.  The McCanns would know this.

  12. Kate and Gerry McCann are very keen on keeping fit and they constantly run,  Mrs McCann has the physique of an athelete.  She looks like someone who has put a lot of hard work into training and jogging. Her husband I believe was a keen sports man and a professional footballer at some point.  Apart from that, they are health experts.  Who knows better than a heart specialist and a G.P who has expertise in other medical fields as well.  They obviously continued to train when Madeleine went missing.  Is like breathing and becomes part of their daily routine.  They probably felt it helped fight the horrible dark thoughts and feelings they were suffering with when Madeleine disappeared.

  13. Welcome Lydia you are right, they were keen sports people, even the holiday they had was full of sport, running, tennis.  I wholeheartedly agree with you, and as Jayelles said running would make them tired.  And it would also produce the endorphins needed to keep them going through such hard times.

  14. They are health experts with a keen interest and love for sports and jogging. They are physically very fit and they need to keep that up on a daily basis.  It becomes as natural as breathing when one is so dedicated to a keep fit regime.  I think it was even more important to help fight the dark thoughts and feelings they were struggling to cope with.
    As a sufferer of a chronic anxiety disorder, I know just how painful and terrifying it is to live with the physical symptoms of anxiety.  The psychological aspect is not the only way that anxiety manifests itself.  It must be unbearable to suffer anxiety when your child is stolen.  I can’t imagine the reality .of this.  It must be excruciating.  God love them.

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