Workoutaholic: When does working out turn into an addiction?

How do you know when working out slowly turns into an addiction? Which brings us to the main question: can you become addicted to exercise?


In general, working out is seen as something healthy, which means sports will not be seen as an addiction by many people. Yet it is possible to become addicted to training. A factor that contributes to this is the endorphins that are released during exercise, this happiness hormone ensures that you feel good. What can also contribute is the positive reactions of others you get from hitting the gym; compliments, likes, people who are impressed.


Which signals indicate a possible training addiction?
Some examples…

  • You do not listen to your body and ignore signals that you need a rest day or complaints that may indicate a (starting) injury.
  • You are only focused on the performance you have to deliver. It is no longer fun.
  • You keep track of your progress, to the extreme.
  • Social activities lead to exercise. Other appointments will disappear from your agenda and/or you will cancel appointments so that you can go back to the gym.
  • If you miss a training session, you feel angry and frustrated.
  • Your train longer than you had planned in advance.
  • You spend a considerable part of the day exercising.
  • A day feels useless if you didn’t work out.


Am I a workout addict?
Do you recognize yourself in several of the above points? Then it might be time to take a critical look at your own behavior.

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