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There are many things in life that are classed as addictions, and yet so many people won’t be able to tell when their time in the gym has tipped from an everyday hobby to a wider issue. We all know that too much of something is a bad thing, and we are living in a society that demands us to be beautiful, in shape, and active. The problem is that, if you are not careful enough, this can turn into an obsession and you can be over-exercising. Read on to learn the signs that tell you that you are exercising too much.

Exercise addiction can often start because of the surge of happy hormones you get after you finish a workout. You continue to get that feeling of wellbeing and euphoria that you enjoy. Combine that with people telling you how well you’re looking, and you keep adding minutes to your routine. You get tempted to get up earlier than normal to do your cardio, and you get to the gym after work to do your strength training.

Then, you go for extra walks to keep watching your step counts increase on your wearable. And you become compelled to top off your step count over and over again. You might not think you need Sunshine Behavioral Health in the same way an alcoholic would, but that just may not be true. Exercise addiction is a real thing. Being able to understand when exercising is becoming too much is very important, and you should be able to watch out for the telltale signs of overexercising.

Signs of Over-Exercising

Energy and Performance

One of the signs that tell you that you are exercising too much is changes in your energy and performance. Upon waking up, you should feel refreshed and energized. It’s not normal to wake up exhausted and/or sore every day or to be dragging in the middle of the day. If you do, your body is telling you that you need to rest. You should take time to deload regularly.

Guilt

Missing the gym happens from time to time. Sometimes, life gets in the way and you need to reschedule your training session. Feeling intense guilt, irritable, or angry when you can’t exercise is not healthy or normal.

Injuries

Another sign that you are exercising too much is getting injuries regularly. There are many ways to avoid injuring yourself when exercising. However, if you’ve hurt your knee or twisted your ankle, and you still going on, you are putting yourself in a worse predicament. If you still go to the gym regardless, this shows an unhealthy compulsion.

More Time Training

It’s good to squeeze in a training session when you have extra time. But if every spare minute of free time, you are spending it at the gym, something is not right. If you are no longer seeing your friends or family, you are ignoring everything else in your life, and exercising is the most important thing for you, you may be dealing with an addiction.

No Enjoyment

Training religiously even if you’re not enjoying it may be another sign that you are over-exercising. It’s always too much exercise if you’re not a fan of the gym but yet you still push yourself to go. This is a problem because you should be enjoying the workout you’re doing, not hating every second of being there. Exercise is not only about health and fitness, fun while exercising should be part of the equation.

Expenses

You’re prioritizing the gym as a bill. If you’re adding exercise and classes to the list of regular expenses but you’re spending more on classes, athletic gear, or gym-related equipment than your actual bills, then that is a problem. You should be able to find a balance in your finances and if you aren’t because you are spending a lot of money on classes and exercising, it could create another set of problems. 

Stress Management

Dealing with stress appropriately will help you avoid unhealthy patterns of behavior. Any type of addiction can be the result of your inability to manage stress adequately. Many times when experiencing stress or uncomfortable emotions people engage in addictive behaviors, such as drinking, using drugs, gaming, overeating, and/or overexercising. Therefore, it’s important to implement ways to cope with stress that are not damaging.

Over-exercising is not something you can ignore. Feeling exhausted and guilty, injuring yourself regularly, expending most of your time training while not enjoying yourself, or not dealing with stress adequately are not regular aspects of fitness. Now that you know some of the signs that you are exercising too much, you can stay fit and healthy without engaging in obsessive patterns.

To a Fitter Healthier You,

Adriana Albritton

The Fitness Wellness Mentor

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