Blake Horstmann Reflects on Mental Health and Happiness 1 Year After 'Paradise'
A lot can change in one year, and Blake Horstmann is a perfect example of that.
Blake posted a selfie Thursday that he took in what looks like a gym locker room as he shows off his very toned physique. In his caption, Blake wrote about where he was mentally and physically a year ago and how she got himself to change his outlook one step at a time.
He began, "Before the airing and during the airing of paradise I was severely depressed and let my health get away from me. Gained close to 20 pounds and lost basically all of my muscle mass. S--t I could barely get out of bed."
Blake explained he started "walking around the block everyday," which "very slowly" helped him start to feel better.
He wrote, "It was a good reminder for me how much our mental health can deteriorate when our physical health does."
Blake concluded his caption, "Over the last year I have worked on myself. I ate right, went to therapy, and took time for myself. Now I feel better than I ever have. Just know it is NEVER too late to get healthy! It doesn’t happen over night, but It can simply start with a walk around the block."
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Blake had a rather rough go-around on Season 6 of "Bachelor in Paradise," which premiered August 5, 2019. It started when Caelynn Miller-Keyes told some "Paradise" friends she and Blake had a relationship before the show and she believed they would be together. Blake alleges his side of the story was different and proceeded to release text messages between himself and Caelynn.
His decision to publish the messages sparked a major backlash, but he said he felt like he "had no other choice."
Caelynn said in a separate Instagram post that she was "mortified" about his sharing their private conversations.
In September, after "Paradise" ended, Blake joined "Bachelor Happy Hour" and opened up at length about the struggles he dealt with both on the show and after.
Blake admitted he had a "complete breakdown" and was "breathing into a paper bag" before posting the text screenshots on Instagram. He said he reached out to some of his fellow Bachelor Nation friends, but received mixed responses about what to do.
He revealed, "Right when I got back from the show, before it even started, I was already starting to go into that deep hole of where I just didn’t want to leave my apartment because there were so many people out there that I had disappointed."
Rachel Lindsay and Ali Fedotowsky-Manno spoke to Blake about the cyberbullying and hate they receive, and Blake said he dealt with "lots of death threats." Even his family, including his grandma, got messages on social media about his actions.
Rachel said, "Isn’t that sad? People forget we are real. We’re real people, this is our real life, and these are real stories. You may not agree with every single thing that you do, but just because we’ve put our lives for the public to see and we decided to be vulnerable and open, it doesn’t give you the excuse to rip us apart."
Ever since the "Paradise" finale last year, Blake has traveled around the world, worked on his DJ skills, and even briefly grew out a beard (thanks, quarantine!). Sometimes all it takes to get there is just a walk around the block.