Exercise is recognised as being important for physical and psychological well being. It is recommended that everyone takes part in exercise for at least 30 minutes three times a week.
Many people exercise much more frequently than that and their activity levels are not harmful. They may be working towards sport or aerobic goals and gain a high degree of satisfaction from their exercise.
“My daughter has always been more sporty and active than her friends. She goes to the gym every day for two hours – should I be worried?“
A person who is over-exercising in a harmful way may show some or all of the following signs:
- They exercise regardless of all consequences – missing social activities or important school, college or work commitments.
- They have an emotional attachment to exercise and become extremely anxious if they miss an exercise session.
- The goal of exercise is to lose weight and feel worthwhile, rather than for athletic goals, enjoyment or social interaction.
- Their schedule is rigid and if they miss one exercise session, they will do twice the amount next time.
- They will exercise even if they are injured.
- They will exercise alone.
People who regularly over-exercise are at risk of the following physical side-effects and complications:
- Degenerative arthritis
- Stress fractures
- Breakdown of muscle mass
- Cardiovascular complications
- Deterioration of social relationships
- Failure or difficulties at school, college and work due to the demands of exercise regime
- Social isolation
- Anxiety and depression
- Poor self-esteem and self-image
If you are or if you know a young person struggling with an eating disorder, we specialise in advanced treatments to get people on the road to recovery.
For young people requiring inpatient treatment for an eating disorder, please contact Schoen Clinic Newbridge.
For young people requiring outpatient treatment for an eating disorder, please contact Schoen Clinic Chelsea.