Dame Kelly Holmes: "I was cutting myself with scissors every day"

Dame Kelly Holmes, International Sports Conference for Women, Abu Dhabi 2015 Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images for FBMA

Double-Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes has opened up about how fears over career-threatening injuries caused her to self-harm.

She revealed it had been one of seven injuries that had caused her to first cut herself on a daily basis, as she spoke about her experience with depression at the new Health & Wellbeing Live show near Tonbridge on Saturday.

Holmes told BBC South East: "At my lowest, I was cutting myself with scissors every day that I was injured.

"The scissors were in the bathroom and I used them to release the anguish that I had. It was really bad place to be."

She continued: "But my biggest message to people is that you can get out of that and you can still achieve.

"There is always a light at the end of the tunnel."

Holmes gave up her successful career in the army, where she had been competing at an international level in athletics since 1992, to become a full time athlete in 1997, but 2003 was her lowest point due to injury, ahead of the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

She would go on to win both the 800m and 1500m Olympic titles before announcing her retirement from athletics the following year.

Co-founder of Health & Wellbeing Live, Becky Randall said: "[Kelly] struggled but she kept going. "So many of us are inhibited by a black cloud that sometimes descends, by feeling not good enough.

"I want people to understand that they are not alone and that talking about it is what really helps. It's got to be out there."

Holmes, who was made a Dame in 2005, founded the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust in 2008 to support young athletes and help the lives of young people facing disadvantage in the UK.