climbED: Eating Disorders and Exercise

Something that I have found particularly difficult with anorexia is exercise. I have battled with exercise addiction in the past, at one point I’d spend nearly the whole day exercising in one way or another. My parents bought a cross-trainer and it became an addiction instantly.

There have been plenty of times where I have used exercise purely to burn calories and I still do from time to time but now I mostly have a good relationship with exercise. I dance for enjoyment, to socialise and to gain confidence rather than specifically to burn calories. I am a keen dancer and dance with a team that compete and this is great for my mental health. Sometimes it is the only thing I do outside my house but my mental health team aren’t always happy with me dancing.

I find ‘exercise ban’ quite difficult, I totally understand it at dangerously low weights but I almost wish that there was a balance at safer weights because the positive impact dance has on my mental health far outweighs my mental health team’s concerns of burning calories.

Getting the balance right is¬†definitely something I still struggle with and I’m sure many people do. I think exercise is great for mental health but it’s being able to do it in a safe and non-obsessive way that doesn’t feed into the eating disorder.

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