Helping Seniors Live Healthier Lives

Tips For Using Exercise To Overcome Addiction

If you are suffering from addiction to a substance or an activity, such as gambling, you might find yourself with way too much time on your hands. You might have to take off time from your job in order to go to treatment during the day, leaving you with less money for activities and more time to consider how badly you want to engage in your addiction. One cheap, easy way to help manage your addiction and move through recovery is to use exercise. Here are some tips for using exercise to overcome addiction.

1. Use Exercise to Fill Your Schedule

One thing that you can do is use exercise to fill your schedule. You were likely told by your treatment team to schedule each part of your day, including getting up, putting on clothing, and making yourself breakfast. You need structure, especially early in recovery, to help keep yourself from dwelling on the thoughts and feelings that fuel your addiction. It might be hard for you to find enough things to do to fill your day outside of treatment. Exercise can be one of those things that gets you out of the house and into the world.

Schedule a two-hour run, for example. You probably can't run for two hours straight, but commit to being outside for those two hours walking and running. Listen to a podcast while you are running or walking to keep yourself out of your own head. Schedule three hours at the gym and take the time to walk to the gym and back. This will help fill up your time in a productive manner.

2. Use Exercise to Feel Like You're Accomplishing Something

You might not feel like you are getting anywhere in recovery. This can make it hard to stay motivated because recovery is really hard. However, you can use exercise to set little goals for yourself, like shaving fifteen seconds off of your first mile or benching a certain amount of weight. These goals have nothing to do with your recovery but they are going to be way harder to meet if you are engaging in your addiction. Use this sense of accomplishment to stay committed to recovery.

3. Use Exercise to Connect

Finally, consider joining a group exercise class or a running club. Try doing something social with your exercise to help you more fully connect with the world and therefore stay committed to recovery. Your addiction does better when you are isolated. Use exercise to fight the desire to isolate yourself.

For more information, talk to a company that specializes in rehabilitation. They will be able to help give you more tips for overcoming your addiction.