Compulsive exercise goes beyond maintaining one’s weight or sculpting your body to physical perfection. It can be considered as a form of addiction. People afflicted with exercise bulimia work out excessively to make up for their eating binges. Some would even buy all kinds of fitness supplements from local American drug stores or discount pharmacy Canada online to ascertain that they will maintain their sculpted body. These types of exercise junkies normally workout 3 to 4 hours at a stretch several times a day. Actually, this behavior is more about control than the desire to get rid of that waistline bulge.
Compulsive exercisers live and breathe working out, and they get genuinely freaked out if they fail to get the right amount of exercise that they feel they need to. The same is true with exercise bulimia except that eating binges are involved. Exercise bulimia sufferers often have food binges and would later work out excessively to atone for their “weakness”. For them, exercise becomes a means to manage calories, rationalize eating, and a way to afflict oneself for overeating or for eating indiscriminately.
Both compulsive exercisers and exercise bulimia sufferers have the following symptoms in common:
- Choosing workout over work or social activities
- Won’t break for rest or recovery, even when sick or injured
- Exercising until they drop from exhaustion
- Fun is not a part of working out
- Missing a workout can lead to stress, emotional upset, even depression
- Calories eaten/calories burned fixation
- The need to burn calories all day, even when not working out
When does exercising become too much?
Too much or too little exercise depends on the person. For most people, 60 to 90 minutes of exercise four to five times a week, including recovery and downtime, is healthy and sensible. Professional athletes can work out for many hours every day with no problem. Your idea of the right amount of exercise may be different from your buddies or next-door neighbor. Factors such as age, current health condition, lifestyle, and fitness level should also be taken into consideration.