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Fitness and Exercise

Abdominal Exercises
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Compulsive Exercise
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Compulsive Exercise

Compulsive exercise is when a person becomes addicted to exercise and feels compelled to do so no matter what. A compulsive exerciser is a person who experiences anxiety and/or guilt if she does not exercise and she will not let anything deter her from her exercise regime, whether it be bad weather, a sickness, an injury, a social event, etc. A person who is a compulsive exerciser does not plan exercise into their life but instead plans their life around exercise.

Too much of a good thing

Exercise is an important aspect of life and many healthy problems can stem from a lack of it such as obesity, high cholesterol and heart problems. What many people do not realize however is that too much exercise can cause its share of both physical as well as psychological harm to a person.

Exercising excessively can cause damage to bones, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and joints of the body. As well when an injury is not given sufficient time to heal this can cause long-term physical damage that won’t be so easy to recover from. Just the right amount of exercise builds muscle but too much does the opposite- it serves to destroy muscle mass.

Compulsive exercise is especially disastrous for girls because it wrecks havoc with their hormones. Girls who exercise too much will likely notice disruptions in their monthly menstrual cycles. Girls who take exercise to even worse extremes are likely to stop having their periods completely (known as amenorrhea). Excessive exercise can also lead to an increased potential for the development of osteoporosis, which is premature loss of bone.

Compulsive exercise puts a great deal of stress and strain on the heart that it does not need. If an individual is also strictly watching their food intake this can cause even more problems. A compulsive exercise that also suffers from anorexia nervosa is making their way down a deadly path of self-destruction.

People who are addicted to exercise often have a poor self-image of themselves and that’s why they do what they do. They equate their weight and how their body looks with whether they are worthy or not. Compulsive exercisers often experience problems with their studies in school as well as having problems in a social sense. These people always put exercise first to the detriment of everything else, including family, friends, schoolwork and recreational activities.

Warning signs

Would you know how to recognize the signs of compulsive exercise if it happened to your child? She could be having a problem if:

-she refuses to skip a workout, even if she is ill, tired, or injured

-she really does not enjoy exercising but pushes herself to do it no matter what

-she expresses feelings of guilt or anxiety if she does happen to skip an exercise routine

-she misses one exercise session one week and pushes herself twice as hard the next week

-she is always preoccupied with working out or her weight

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