Eminem Gets Honest About His Addiction and Turning to Exercise to Recover

Every runner knows there’s nothing quite like a runner’s high. For Eminem| that endorphin high was everything when he was striving to combat his addiction to pills. The rapper opened up about his struggle with drug addiction and how he used exercise to combat it in the September issue of Men’s Journal. He told all in an honest interview about overdose| recovery| and pushing through even when it gets hard. You can read the full interview at Men’s Journal| but here’s a recap of his personal weight-loss journey.

On his weight gain

“In 2007| I overdosed on pills| and I went into the hospital. I was close to 230 pounds. I’m not sure how I got so big| but I have ideas. The coating on the Vicodin and the Valium I’d been taking for years leaves a hole in your stomach| so to avoid a stomachache| I was constantly eating ¡ª and eating badly.”

On turning to exercise for recovery

“When I got out of rehab| I needed to lose weight| but I also needed to figure out a way to function sober. Unless I was blitzed out of my mind| I had trouble sleeping. So I started running. It gave me a natural endorphin high| but it also helped me sleep| so it was perfect.

“It’s easy to understand how people replace addiction with exercise. One addiction for another but one that’s good for them. I got an addict’s brain| and when it came to running| I think I got a little carried away . . . seventeen miles a day on a treadmill. [I started] to dial back on the treadmill| [and] I tried out some of those workout DVDs you do at home.”

On sticking with it even when he doesn’t feel like it

“I still hate pullups. They’re a motherf*cker| but I do them. I even fill out the log afterward. Once you’re at a place where you’ve made progress and you’ve got some time invested in it| you don’t wanna quit and give up what you started.”

Image Source: Getty / Christopher Polk