Exercise Addiction and Psychotherapy Counselling & Therapy
Exercise is an important part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle and essential for a person’s well being. Unlike other behaviours that can become addictive, society actively encourages exercise and that can be confusing. There are, however, several characteristics that distinguish regular healthy exercise from addiction.
The pursuit of exercise is persistent. The sufferer will exercise too long and too hard, regardless of illness or exhaustion and sometimes for hours a day, not allowing the body to rest and recover in between.
The exercise done is maladaptive. Instead of helping the person, it actually becomes damaging, threatening health with injuries or physical problems due to inadequate rest and recuperation and sometimes may lead to malnutrition.
Exercising becomes the most important thing in the person’s life, and instead of helping to relieve, stress can cause anxiety if not enough is done. It can also be a symptom of other health issues, such as eating disorders or OCD. Families, careers, social relationships and responsibilities can suffer as exercise is prioritised, leaving the person isolated.
Addiction is a behavioural pattern developed to cope with difficult emotional problems, in order to help the person feel more in control or feel better about themself. However, the feelings of control or euphoria gradually decrease, increasing the addiction in order to try and maintain those feelings.
Therapy for Addictions
The therapists at Cavendish Psychotherapy can work with you to help you manage what may feel like overwhelming anxieties. Psychotherapy is an effective way of exploring the emotional difficulties underlying the need to over exercise so that a better understanding of them is gained and more effective coping strategies can be developed.