You know that feeling you get after an awesome workout?
That endorphin high and sense of satisfaction (and relief!) that you accomplished something difficult? If that alone has you reaching for your gym shoes, this list is for you!
Working out is great for improving overall health, and those of us that have built a habit of exercising every day know that after some time of consistent progress, it can become addictive. If you’re not sure where you stand on a scale of fitness enthusiast to crazed gym rat, consider this checklist to find out if you’re addicted to exercise:
1. You wear gym clothes everywhere, all of the time.
Sweat pants at the mall, muscle shirts at the grocery store. Your friends inquire whether you’re on your way to they gym or headed home from a workout every time they see you out in public. You even wear your tracksuit on “scheduled off days,” just in case a spontaneous workout falls into your lap.
2. Everyone at the gym knows who you are.
You’ve made friends with everyone in the building, from the people working at the front desk to the nice guy who cleans the locker rooms. You spend so much time there that the gym has become somewhat of an alternate reality; you have your gym-besties, your gym-crushes, and you’ve even made one or two gym-emenies from dealing with people who can’t seem to avoid the most obvious gym mistakes.
3. You’ve been mistaken for a gym employee.
When someone notices you at the gym so often that they assume you work there… you have a serious problem.
4. You don’t hit snooze when your alarm clock signals you to workout.
Waking up at 8:00 a.m. for work? Agonizing. Waking up at 8:00 a.m. to workout? That’s a piece of (gluten-free) cake!
5. Every day, you wake up with a different muscle sore than yesterday.
And you like it.
6. You’d rather exercise than go-out with friends.
If spending “a night at the bar” for you means pumping iron late-night at the gym, you may not have many friends to begin with. If you do, they probably grow tired of you bailing on group outings because you plan to workout early in the morning.
7. But that doesn’t matter, because your closest friends are also active.
Because there’s no greater bond than the relationship between workout partners! Remember those gym-besties we mentioned earlier? As far as you’re concerned, those are the only friends you really need in life.
8. Your phone’s storage is usually full because of all the mirror selfies you’ve taken to track your progress.
And it hurts a little bit when you have to delete one to free up space. Even the ones you took five years ago…
9. Your workout outfits take up the majority of space in your closet.
You barely have any room for real clothes, but that’s okay. If you’re guilty of fact #1, we’ve already established that you probably wear gym clothes 90% of the time.
10. You don’t mind rushing to the gym for a quick workout.
After you’re done beating yourself up for eating too much or missing a day, you go to the gym at an insane time (like 11:30) to get in a workout before they close.
Are you guilty of more than %50 of this list? Congratulations my friend, you’re officially a gym rat! If you’ve determined that you are in fact a gym rat, never fear, all is not lost. With just a few simple steps you can ease it back from gym rat to… gym cat (is that a thing?)
Easy steps to stop being a Gym Rat
- Rest days. Use them. (Seriously, use them, they’re good for you).
- Buddy up with a non gym rat. (Give it an hour, that’s when the complaining kicks in).
- Car pool (It only takes walking home once to cure you of gym rat-ism)
- Make other plans, so you have to be out of the gym by that time. (Getting married works well for this. Sometimes.)
- Get a hobby. Something relaxing. Powerlifting + Meditating = Power-tating.
- Only go on certain days. No, not like every day ending in the word ‘day’.
And if all that seems like too much work, then just embrace your gym rat nature, but remember: make it count!