Making Yourself Exercise: Does it Have Consequences?

· October 9, 2018

Tennis, running, soccer, basketball, canoeing, gymnastics, surfing, horseback riding… There are so many different ways to exercise that it’s impossible to not like any of them. Exercise benefits the body and mind in many ways. But be careful. There are certain situations where exercise is a duty and not a choice. In this case, you end up exercising because you have to and not because you want to.

If you exercise due to some type of commitment or necessity, the intrinsic motivation you had at the beginning will start to fade away. Therefore, unless recommended by a doctor for the sake of your health, making yourself exercise every day is neither rewarding nor recommended.

Obsession

Doing some type of physical activity two to three times a week has many benefits. It helps decrease anxiety and stress. It’s also a natural antioxidant. On the other hand, it helps prevent premature aging and improves emotional stability.

Woman running down a road.

The problem is when you begin to abuse a healthy habit, thereby making it dangerous. If exercise becomes an obsession, it can cause serious psychological disorders. Muscle dysmorphia, bulimia. and anorexia nervosa can be caused by an exercise obsession. It can also cause depression or general melancholy.


Making yourself exercise to hide other problems

One of the main reasons people make themselves exercise is to look better in the mirror. Exercise helps reduce body fat. It also helps people who are already in shape stay that way.

But, in any case, you have to pay attention to what your body is telling you. It’s a sign if one day you feel bad because you can’t exercise due to other commitments. This a symptom of withdrawal. When you depend on something to make you feel good, whether it’s drugs, alcohol, or exercise and you have to go without it, you feel bad. As with any other addiction, it helps to find out the real reason why you have the habit.

For example, maybe making yourself exercise is how you forget your problems. But that doesn’t work. Your problems will still be there no matter how many hours you spend in the gym. You can’t solve problems by avoiding them. Once your workout is over, the problem you’ve been trying to camouflage will come right back to the surface.

Mood swings

Exercise is an excellent way to naturally boost endorphins. These opioid peptides ease pain and produce a feeling of deep well-being. Therefore, exercise keeps you in a good mood, reduces sadness, and strengthens the immune system. 

But when you become “addicted” to it, you become irritable, nervous, and anxious. There’s the paradox. Frequent exercise makes you happy, but it’s the suffering that takes center stage. 

Changes in priorities

People who spend hours a day at the gym take time away from other things such as hobbies, friends, and family. Something very characteristic about these people is that their circle of friends is very small. They also tend to be obsessed with nutrition.

They rarely go out to lunch or dinner with friends. They don’t allow themselves to disconnect for even a day because they feel like they’ll lose what they have “won”.

This all means that making yourself exercise ends up making you a prisoner!

Man in gym doing reps.

What happens with children

It’s very healthy for children to engage in team activities like sports. In doing so, their social and motor skills improve. Their values and autonomous behaviors also improve. Therefore, steering your children towards extracurricular activities helps them develop in integral ways.

However, if they don’t like the sport you have chosen for them, it will gradually become a burden for them. At this point, it’ll begin to negatively affect other areas of their lives.

People tend to think that all kids like soccer so they put them on soccer teams. They think it’s good for the child to join a team and play games on the weekends. But before making that decision for them, observe the child. Analyze their physical and motor skills. Take note of their hobbies and tendencies. Ask them if they like playing on the team and if they like playing that sport.

Remember that exercise is positive and very healthy. But it’s important that you don’t let it take over your life or affect your relationships. It should be something that makes you feel happy on a day to day basis.