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scared she is addicted to exercise

(3 Posts)
SolveAProblemLikeMaria Sat 29-Mar-14 17:04:56

Hi all,

DD will be 14 in April. I have a 16 year old son and and a 12 year old son as well. We have always been a sporty. I myself run and play tennis, DH plays rugby and cricket and also coaches cricket. Elder son is also a keen rugby player and has recently taken an interest in rowing, younger son loves football and basketball at school! As parents we have always tried to engage kids in outdoorsy type activities so would go on long walks, bike rides etc. I don't feel like we have ever been OTT with exercise, we just have tried to be active. Not once though have DH or I ever connected being active to weightloss/being slim etc.

My DD, like the rest of us, has always enjoyed sport. She is part of the school swimming, netball and lacrosse team. Over the past few months though I've noticed she is exercising more and more. Aside from all the sports practices at school (Which is more than enough exercise, considering she has her PE lessons too) she runs for an hour- an hour and a half, about 4x a week. I also hear her exercising in her bedroom, starjumps etc. I just found out 2 weeks ago that she and her friends are using the gym at school. I knew there was a gym but I thought it was only for 6th formers to use so was actually a bit shocked that they are even allowed to use it. I haven't noticed any worrying eating habits. Her relationship with food appears to be perfectly normal but I am worried that she is over-exercising or using it as a form of purging. I know there is such a thing as exercise-bulimia.

How should I address the issue? I have said before now when she heads out for her runs that she will tire herself out with all her sports practices at school too. She lied to me a few days ago and said she was going for a run because netball practice had been cancelled. I found out a few days later from her PE teacher that this was a lie and no practices had been called off. I feel it is past the stage now where she just exercises for enjoyment or to keep fit, it seems like a real control issue for her. The most worrying so far was when a friend rang up asking if she wanted to go to the cinema. I overheard her say she couldn't as she was busy. I asked her what she was doing that night meaning she couldn't go to the cinema and she said "well I might meet up with them later but I need to go for my run." It concerns me that she is putting her exercise as a priority over seeing her friends. Where should I go from here?

specialsubject Sat 29-Mar-14 19:25:23

I'm afraid that there are some disturbing signs here - exercise in bedroom, lying, not socialising.

Hopefully someone with some up to date advice as to what to do will be along soon.

HolidayCriminal Sat 29-Mar-14 19:41:57

I had exercise bulimia, I got over it & am fine, it was short-lived.

I wouldn't just yet address it head on but I would try to weasel out of her what she's stressed out about nowadays. Might need to be a bit sneaky in that maybe a joint outing a chance to catch her when she's relaxed & happy she might open up a bit about things she wishes were different or that are preying on her mind some of the time. When I learned out to deal with my problems I didn't eat over them, iyswim, so I didn't need to exercise like a freak, either.

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