Some jokingly say they are "addicted" to exercise when they have a great time exercising. While a personalized exercise routine is part of a healthy and balanced lifestyle, it is important to remember that one can actually become "addicted" to exercise, just like alcohol or other drugs, but it is not harmful to health.. The key to avoiding addiction during regular physical activity is achieved by setting achievable goals and not letting exercise become an obsession. Exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle, but too much can cause serious negative side effects.
Part 1 of 3: Motivate Yourself to Exercise
Step 1. Enjoy the exercise
Doing physical activities that you enjoy will turn exercise into a hobby rather than just a calorie-burning session. Everyone has different interests when it comes to the intensity of the routine. Finding something suitable and enjoyable for you will help you keep exercising and establish a healthy relationship with exercise.
- If you enjoy socializing with your community and lifting weights, the gym may be perfect for you.
- If you're more into solitude, aerobic exercise, try walking or jogging. This hobby is easy to complement with another, such as bird watching.
- Dance is great for exercising. If you like to dance, sign up for an aerobic dance class that meets regularly.
Step 2. Stay entertained
Many teens and adults use exercise as a healthy escape from everyday stress. Even if you are still in the process of acclimating your mind and body to exercise, try not to focus on burning calories. Jog on the treadmill or on the street with a portable music device, or watch TV while exercising at home.
Some apps, like Zombies Run, offer immersive audio storylines designed to run or walk and keep you entertained at the same time
Step 3. Exercise at your own pace
Choosing an exercise at your own pace can help you get more comfortable with your routine without the extra pressure from peers or coaches. Make sure you push yourself to get the most out of your routine. Increasing your heart rate has more health benefits than just exercising at a non-demanding level, but just make sure you don't over exert yourself.
Part 2 of 3: Establish an Exercise Routine
Step 1. Set goals
Exercise should be enjoyable. Gain control of your routine and think about what you want to get out of it. Decide what you want to achieve in the short term and take the bigger picture into account. Goals will help you focus on a healthy lifestyle change.
- Set goals with the S. M. A. R. T technique: only specific (S), measurable (M), achievable (A), relevant (R) and with a limited time (T). For example: "I am going to run a 5K in 2 months by walking, jogging or running 3 times a week."
- A short-term goal may be to determine if you can do something simple like walk 1 mile (2 km). If not, then it is a good achievable goal.
- Long-term goals should be something you hope to do after a few months of dedication. Following the previous example of the 2km walk, you may consider double climbing to go to the store and back. You can also ask your doctor if your body is capable of exercising to run those 2 km.
Step 2. Make time out of your day
This simple step has many benefits. First, this way you make sure you have a plan to get enough exercise. Second, limit your exercise session, which helps you get back to the other important aspects of life. Setting a schedule for exercise and other obligations is part of a healthy and balanced life.
Make a "date" with yourself to exercise. Put it on your calendar, just like dental appointments. Remember: it's preventive health
Step 3. Exercise with a friend
So it will seem more like a social appointment with another person which must be met. They will be encouraging each other to continue the routine after the novelty wears off. This will also help you monitor each other for signs of exercise addiction.
If your partner becomes dishonest or reserved about his exercise routine, gets upset if he can't go to exercise, or takes his routines to non-recreational levels, he could be developing an addiction to exercise. You should be on the lookout for any changes like these in you
Part 3 of 3: Maintain a Healthy Balance
Step 1. Acknowledge your vulnerability
Everyone is prone to exercise addicts, from advanced athletes to office workers. If a change in your life gives you more time to exercise, be sure to limit the amount of time and energy you put into it. Doing a new exercise plan will allow you to pursue your other interests as well.
Step 2. Limit the intensity of your exercise routines
Having unnecessarily high expectations for caloric expenditure or the length of sessions are signs of an exercise addiction. It is natural to want to increase the intensity of the routine, but there is a maximum limit that the body supports. Try to focus more on the other areas of your life after completing your daily session easily and carelessly.
Step 3. Don't replace another addiction with exercise
Exercise releases dopamine in the brain, the same chemical that the body releases when it satisfies an addiction. Going for a run is good to escape the craving for a cigarette, but you may be replacing one dependency with another. You should get enough exercise, but seek help to quit your previous addiction before starting or extending a new exercise regimen.
Step 4. Be honest about your exercise regimen
If you find out that you lie to those close to you about the amount of exercise you do, you could have an addiction. If you have an obsessive personality, try to share your exercise regimen with a friend from time to time. Thus, you will have the guarantee of being comfortable with the amount of exercise you do.
Step 5. Don't put too much emphasis on exercise
It is important to plan an exercise routine that keeps you in shape. However, you must have a healthy balance of interests that cover all aspects of your life. If you spend several hours a day with your exercise routine, you could have an addiction. Try to spend more time with your loved ones or restart a hobby that you have stopped doing.