Gym addiction

A Nottingham personal trainer says the gym can be healthy and beneficial for fitness lovers but can quickly turn into an addiction if you go too regularly.

Many people enjoy going to the gym but for some it can become an addiction, with people spending the majority of their days training their bodies to the extreme just to feel the post-gym high.

Tracey Gould, a fitness coach and personal trainer, discusses the positives and negative impacts of attending the gym and how moderation is key.

Tracey Gould

She entered into the gym industry because she used to struggle with exercise and finding the right personal trainer to suit her.

She used to end up with a lot of injuries after working out too intensely or lifting weights without the correct form.

She decided to get the correct qualifications so she could professionally continue to teach others about fitness and help them achieve their goals.

Tracey says people can easily become addicted to the gym: “I feel like certain people have addictive personalities and they crave that burn, they crave that release of endorphins but it’s to a level where it’s not healthy.”

She explains many individuals go to the gym, train for three hours and will come back later and will then train again for another three hours.

The feeling after a workout was “amazing” but to constantly want that feeling can be dangerous.

Audio: Tracey Gould discusses exercise addiction

Twenty-year-old Kieran Evans knows first hand what that addiction can feel like as he attends the gym roughly six to seven times a week and has really struggled with the closure.

Kieran explains he goes to the gym because it makes him feel good and he finds it beneficial to his mental and physical health, but feels he has taken it too far with his regular gym visit now becoming seven days a week.

“When I haven’t been (to the gym) I feel like a weak person and that I’ve failed myself”
Kieran Evans

Some common symptoms individuals may feel when experiencing gym addiction is feeling an uncontrollable desire to exercise, reducing other activities in order to spend more time exercising and feeling withdrawal symptoms when you have gone for a long period without exercising.

Lockdown has meant people were forced away from the gym, which has resulted in many, like Kieran, spending hundreds of pounds on equipment in order to exercise in their own homes.

Audio: Kieran Evans discusses his gym addiction 

Exercise addiction is something personal trainers like Tracey try and steer their clients away from.

However, Tracey would highly recommend the gym to those who are starting their fitness journey or those who are just tired of their usual exercise routine.