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Can You Overdo Sports Supplements?

Jan 20, 2008
Well, I think I've done really well. I joined this gym in January along with all the others who thought they'd piled it on over Christmas and its now May and I'm still here. The rest of the gym population has decreased greatly since then, but I'm one of the few who have stuck it out.

My strategy is 'slowly but surely'. I've followed a sensible diet slightly increasing proteins to cope with the light weight training I'm doing and have kept the rest to low fat healthy eating. Gradually, I have seen a change that I'm happy with. I just want to get healthier, fitter and a little stronger, enough to cope with everyday life and the dreaded aging process.

Of course, there is plenty of advertising at the gym to push sports supplements but I wouldn't call myself a sports person. Apparently, it's protein and creatine that is needed to boost muscle strength but I prefer to get mine from food than from a sports supplement.

Going to the gym is also a good way of widening your social circle too. I have made several friends since I joined and we're all making steady progress. However, one young (ish) man, I believe, has become obsessed with his own body.

I fit my gym timetable around my life. The gym IS his life. If I go at 6am, he's there. If I go at 9pm, he's there. Admittedly, he has made a great improvement in his physique but I do think he's taking it a little too far.

At first, he was the same as the rest of us. Turning up in his comfy jogging bottoms and t shirt that did the job. As his strength, and ego, improved he went down to shorts and vest. Now he's just stretching the bounds of decency with his Lycra attire!

This young man was doing well in his fitness regime. He took note of all the sports supplement advertising to help speed his way to his goal and after a time of testing it out on himself, he became a bit of a bore, talking about nothing else.

His posing in front of the mirror was just embarrassing! He was spending less time actually lifting the weights and more time admiring himself. The day he came up to me, flexed his arm muscles and pointed towards the coffee bar, offering me an after work out drink, well, I just felt embarrassed for him and declined his offer.

I couldn't believe that my turning down his offer could have such an impact on his self esteem as to bring about such a dramatic change in him over the next few weeks. And I was right. He went from being a self obsessed ego maniac to a very moody, quite aggressive man that nobody wanted to get in the way of.

After several members of the gym had experienced some unpleasant run ins with him and complained to the staff about his hostile behaviour, he was taken to one side to discover what the problem was.

It turns out after starting on a fitness programme and healthy eating plan like the rest of us, things were going well for him. He took note of the advertising campaigns in the gym and had, for some time been consuming sports supplements. He believed that if he exceeded the recommended dosage he would increase his muscles even quicker but it didn't work.

Sports supplements are designed to work with your body in a healthy way, giving you that little extra boost in addition to a good diet and sensible workout.

Because this young man had become obsessed, he wasn't happy with the limits his body had set and wanted to continually push the boundaries. He did this by foolishly buying steroids and using them to unnaturally enhance his physique.

When the gym management learnt of his actions, he was strongly advised to visit his doctor for a check up. Without the all clear from a doctor the gym were unwilling to let him continue membership because they believed he was at risk of serious damage to himself.

A check up revealed he had a dangerously high heart rate due to misuse of steroids and he was banned from the gym until such time as he could prove he was off the steroids. If only he had stuck to the sensible sports supplements and not been greedy for false popularity.
About the Author
Health expert Catherine Harvey looks at the use of sports supplements in the battle for health and fitness. To find out more please visit http://www.bodyshapersfitness.com/
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