Obsession with exercise can lead to injuries, and like anything in life, too much of a good thing can be bad. I belong to a gym which I go to two or three times a week, when I feel like lifting some weights, or maybe to use the elliptical machine for a cardio workout, as these are healthy activities which can leave you feeling and looking better. Sometimes when I’m there, I’ve observed what I call “gym rats”. These are people who almost always seem to be there, working themselves to the point of exhaustion, and I’ve overheard conversations amongst these people as they sometimes discuss shoulder or back problems which most likely are due to over-exercising.
So how do you know when you are over doing the exercise thing? There are some simple guidelines which can help you to gauge when you’re doing too much. The first sign that you may be turning into a “gym rat” is if you feel guilty if you don’t make it to the gym everyday. Exercising shouldn’t become a chore, but rather it should be something that you want to do, as exercise can make you feel good. There’s no reason to feel that you have to be at the gym for two or three hours everyday, particularly if you are doing it for the wrong reasons. There’s much more to life than having a perfectly sculpted rear end.
Exercising can also mean working in the garden, or mowing the lawn, or even just walking around the block, preferably with a friend or neighbor. If you’re exercising to the point of complete exhaustion, then you’re doing too much. A good idea, if you want some guide lines, is to make an appointment with a trainer down at your gym and discuss what your goals are, like maybe finally doing something about the extra weight you’ve been carrying around your middle. This can be done without having to turn exercising into another job.
There are some people who look to their local gym as a social outlet as well as a place to work out, and if this is the case, than by all means have fun hanging out with friends or acquaintances you may meet at the gym. What you don’t want to happen is to turn a healthy activity into something which you feel as if you must do, and you certainly don’t want to exercise to the point of incurring an injury. Also, don’t always fall into the same routine doing the same exercises every time you feel the need for some physical activity. Mix it up a little, and maybe skip a day at the gym for a jog around the neighborhood instead.