When to Get Help
Here’s how to take a quick and easy inventory of your symptoms. The “Exercise Addiction Inventory” (EAI), developed by psychologist Mark Griffiths, PhD, is a six-item questionnaire to pinpoint possible problem areas.
Answers are rated on a five-point scale, including strongly disagree (1) disagree (2) uncertain (3) agree (4) strongly agree (5).
Those most at risk of exercise addiction would score 24 or more out of 30; those with a score of 13 to 23 are at potential risk; and those with a score of 0 to 12 are very unlikely to have an addiction to exercise.
- Exercise is the most important thing in my life.
- Conflicts have arisen between me and my partner about the amount of exercise I do.
- I use exercise as a way of changing my mood (e.g., to get a buzz/to escape).
- Over time I have increased the amount of exercise I do in a day.
- If I have to miss an exercise session I feel moody and irritable.
- If I cut down the amount of exercise I do and then start again, I always end up exercising as often as I did before.
If you or a loved one is also showing signs of recurrent migraines, loss of appetite, depression, reduced self-esteem, sleep problems, or apathy, you may be suffering from an underlying eating disorder and should seek treatment immediately.