We all know that less than 20 percent of Americans meet national physical activity guidelines. But, have you considered how many Americans are addicted to exercise?Recent research is beginning to shed some light on the notion that there may be a point at which too much exercise may have detrimental physical and psychological health effects and turn into an addiction.
How can you tell if someone or you may be addicted to exercise? Ask these questions:
· Do you follow up a poor run or workout by running or exercising more and resting less?
· Have you pushed yourself through a training session despite an injury?
· Do you value exercise more than work or family?
· Would you prefer to work out instead of hanging out with friends?
· Do you feel depressed, irritated or anxious if you miss a workout?
Each of us has a unique tipping point beyond which continuing to sweat, lift, push or pull does more harm than good. People addicted to exercise continue to keep going despite injuries, mental issues, social obligations and physical exhaustion. They may even watch their careers crumble, and their family and friends drift away because exercise is their top (and sometimes only) priority.These are signs of addiction.
If you or someone you know has an exercise addiction, speak to a counselor. As you work with a counselor, change the emphasis of your exercise from "more is better," to quality. Objective progress can be made by planning your workouts with an experienced trainer on a weekly basis, with rest and recovery given the emphasis they deserve in a well-balanced training program.Exercise should be fun and have an element of play. If working out loses all aspects of fun, something has gone wrong. The most competitive professional athletes still love their sport, love to run because it gives pleasure, and not because it has become a compulsive need.
Fitness for Health creates fun, fitness programs based on a person's individual fitness goals. Whether you are a young child or a child at heart, Fitness for Health can you help you achieve your fitness goals. Visit www.FitnessForHealth.org to learn about our exercise and sports programs.