Doing the Least Harm


You talk about stimulus vs results addicts. What do you do for folks you have a hard time keeping out of the gym (promise I’m not even talking about myself here)? I am talking about the people for whom “active recovery” is like two boot camps and a spin class?

The options I can think of are:

  1. Give them their main workouts and a couple of low-stress pump sessions (like calves, abs, etc) so at least the extra they’re doing is controlled.
  2. Go very low volume so their workload is spread over the whole week, and accept they will add loads of conditioning.

I can explain staying out of the gym is beneficial, but if it keeps them happy or from inhaling pizzas and beer, it feels like a good trade. They’re not professional athletes or headed to a stage, so it’s about making progress they can still enjoy I think.

Honestly, some people are beyond help. I personally stopped trying to change people beyond a certain point.

I will explain why being a stimulus addict will hurt their progress (and health), I will even propose them “less damaging” stuff to do on their off days (abs, calves, forearms, mobility, walking/rucking, prehab stuff) but if they go back to their old ways I won’t waste my time with them.

Also understand that in many cases, stimulus addicts suffer from a similar issue as anorexic people (and I’m not talking about bigorexia/muscle dysmorphia) in that “overworking” their body is more about showing that YOU are in control of your body. This is common with people who suffered sexual or physical abuse. And that’s the same thing with anorexia: not eating is actually a subconscious way of feeling in control of your body (to counterbalance the feeling of losing control of it with sexual/physical abuse). With these people it goes WAAAAAYYYY beyond results… and tell them that they will not progress as much won’t make them slow down.


I appreciate that! The explanation about overworking/ anorexia really lands for one of the ones I’m thinking - that makes a ton of sense.

Thank you! I think I’ll go that route of “this is the best information I can give you,” and then they have to be responsible for their choices beyond that. I appreciate the advice!