Moving From Fanatic to Healthy
If you experience most of the items on this list, exercise may be a problem for you. And if you’re in any type of disordered eating recovery, this problem will interfere with your progress. There are a few steps you can take to begin to find your way back to a healthy relationship with exercise.
1. Ditch the rigid exercise schedule.
Many people who have a problem with exercising too much maintain a rigid schedule. Which may be helpful when working towards a goal, but when exercise is doing more harm than good, a schedule can be detrimental.
See if you can let your schedule go for a couple of days and instead take cues from your body’s wisdom. Before you head out for your morning workout, ask yourself, “What would feel fun and nurturing to my body today?” Not, “What’s going to burn the most calories, or sculpt my arms and abs?”
2. Find an activity that allows you to appreciate your body’s strength, power and all-around amazingness.
Most of the over-exercising clients I’ve worked with are participating in activities on a daily basis that leave their bodies feeling beat up. They’re hoping to feel strong, powerful and amazing, but in actuality the grim marathon workouts and brutal boot camp classes leave them feeling depleted.
If you relate to this, try something new; dance, ski, swim, rock climb or go for a hike. Decide how you want to feel in your body and choose an activity that supports that.
3. Connect to meaningful motivation and inspiration.
Many people who over-exercise do so to burn calories, lose weight, or change the body. If these are your only motivating factors, then guess what? You’ll never be satisfied.
What if you stopped exercising to change your physical appearance and started moving to cultivate clarity, creativity and energy? If clarity, creativity and energy don’t land with you, what does? Find what’s meaningful to you and give it a try.
If the way you exercise is leaving you tired, depleted and feeling like you’re never good enough, then I invite you to find one thing you can do today to move toward a healthy relationship with exercise. I know how challenging this can be, but I also know if you keep it simple and take small steps, you can make big changes.