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Diary of an Exercise Addict First Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 860-1400660591
ISBN-10: 0762759992
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Personal trainer Friedman courageously takes on the life-threatening illness of eating disorders and exercise addiction. After a traumatic breakup with her longtime boyfriend, she went into a tailspin, finding control by restricting her caloric intake and exercising compulsively. Assisted by a supportive family and years of therapy, Friedman prevails. This book would be ideal for teenage and young adult women aiming to beat exercise bulimia.—Lynne Maxwell
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


"Friedman, a poet and now a personal trainer, tells [her story] well. She is especially eloquent on the connection between food and sex. . . . Recovery for her means becoming a sexual adventuress again. And while we may fear for her a little, we're also deeply glad for her choice."



"Friedman courageously takes on [a] life-threatening illness. . . . Assisted by a supportive family and years of therapy, [she] prevails. . . . Ideal for teenage and young adult women aiming to beat exercise bulimia." —Library Journal


"Poignant and gutsy. . . . Written with tremendous heart and offering a courageous vision of one woman's struggle with her self-confidence and battle with her own body, [Diary of an Exercise Addict] offers a testament to the courage and passion necessary to escape a cycle of destructive behavior." —Metro Spirit (Augusta, Georgia)


"Peach Friedman’s chronicle of a life with exercise bulimia is the most detailed and honest example of how this disease can enter and take over your life. She exposes every aspect of the emotional, physical, and mental effects this disorder can have on an individual, and with her candidness, I know she can help so many others out there in the world who suffer from this eating disorder." —Jamie-Lynn Sigler, actress and author of Wise Girl


“Whether or not you have ever struggled with an eating disorder, you will relate to Peach Friedman’s Diary of an Exercise Addict. Not only will you find this book accessible and useful but so captivating that you won’t want to put it down. You must read this book!” —Jenni Schaefer, author of Life Without Ed: How One Woman Declared Independence from Her Eating Disorder and How You Can Too


"A very candid look into the world of exercise bulimia--both the daily struggle with body image and the joy of finding recovery. Through her courage to share personal and intimate details of her life, Peach Friedman shows readers how eating disorders profoundly affect every aspect of a person's life." —Tony Paulson, Ph.D., Executive Director of Summit Eating Disorders & Outreach Program, author of Why She Feels Fat: Understanding Your Loved One’s Eating Disorder and How You Can Help


"Peach Friedman writes with ruthless honesty and a poet's grace about an addiction that is all too common in our fitness-crazed society. Her story will resonate with every woman who has ever confused losing weight with feeling good, and it will give hope to the many whose compulsion to over-exercise prevents them from leading full and healthy lives. —Aimee Liu, author of Gaining: The Truth About Life After Eating Disorders



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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: GPP Life; First edition (January 19, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0762759992
  • ASIN: B004KAB6JU
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,297,270 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of the only times that I have seriously questioned whether the other reviews were written by family members, friends or publishing house staffers. I think you would have to be related to this author or paid to write a remotely positive review of this book.

I learned the hard way: do not waste your time or money if you want an in-depth look at someone with exercise bulimia - the author reveals nothing about her daily exercise regimen, her feelings when working out or when she was prevented from doing so. Rather, she spends the bulk of the book trying to impress the reader with her pampered lifestyle ("My flesh has become my battleground: a medium for all my upper-class struggles to manifest through the common rich girl practice of calorie counting") - how "Mommy" and "Daddy" supported her as a 23-year-old college graduate who was too good to work at temp jobs so she would lie around her rent-free cottage eating organic food and picking up men for one-night stands in which she conveniently forgets to use protection. ("Why don't men know how easy I am?"). Trust me, it only gets worse when she discusses her work as a poet. ("I'm dressed like a hooker to hide the fact that I'm a violent poet", "My work is so unconventional, I doubt the Virginia poets really want to claim me as their own"). I was rather horrified to see the review from the father who claims that his daughter has the same body issues - the author has no trouble sunbathing topless in front of her father and she publishes her diary entries in which she writes about her dreams of attacking her father.

I could not find an ounce of empathy for someone who was this self-absorbed. ("All these men are looking at me.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dear WonderWmn and few other sane people who read this book: I sincerely want to thank you for saving me the time I was going to spend writing extensively about the severe and sad shortcomings of the book by nailing every single point I wanted to mention- ranging from the exclamations about her supermodel looks (has anyone with an ED ever ever described themselves as such?!) to the haughty and off-putting attitude about her amazing fortune of having endless familial financial support to dally in whatever she chooses (extremely distracting and reduced the impact of her message significantly). While I sincerely commend her, as all women, who have overcome an ED - I regret this book was written as an "example" of ED, especially exercise bulimia. I think this book would have been less disappointing if it had been presented as a memoir of just a woman rather than a diary or memoir of an eating disordered person. Quite simply, the attitude and behaviors do not represent well a woman with an ED, and her road to recovery is simply a series of self-promotional events. While this is a memoir, and literary style may not be a significant factor- that too was a shortcoming and surprising given that the author has obtained various degrees in Creative Writing, etc. Overall, I unfortunately would not recommend this book as a significant book to read for anyone interested in learning about ED's or for anyone interested in an engaging memoir.
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Format: Paperback
What an egomaniac this chick is.

Eating disorders are about self-hatred and punishment, not going on and on about how "beautiful", "stunning", and "hot" you look. Based on her photo on the book's back flap, those terms are a stretch, as I find her looks average at best, no matter how "long, straight, and blonde" her hair is. This girl needs to get a grip.

I'm giving this book two stars on the chance that some other eating disordered person out there will gain something to help them. For my money, it was an agonizing read where I just wanted to finish the book because I was constantly amazed at the ego on this girl. She had every advantage available to her, and so to me her so-called disorder was merely another facet of her self-indulgent lifestyle.

Another problem with this "diary" is that it perpetuates the myth that eating disorders are the terrain of the affluent. She's all that: white, upper middle class, young, educated. The truth is that eating disorders effect women AND men of all economic strata, all races, all backgrounds, and all ages. It's just that the only ones who could afford to get help were affluent, so that's the only group that got counted in the statistics. Peach is proof of that--she tells us how she goes out and hires a dietician and a therapist, and her parents hire shrinks, etc. a team of professionals to help this girl!

If you can relate to this girl, I dunno. But after struggling with food issues my entire life and sitting through thousands of recovery meetings for the truly food-addicted, I have never seen or heard anyone like Peach.

If nothing else, she needs to go to adult children of alcoholics to get over herself and starting addressing the root of her problems, not just the symptoms.

If you really want to read/learn about exercise bulimia, I highly recommend the Exercise Balance by Powers and Thompson. Both authors specialize in treating eating disorders and working with athletes.
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Format: Kindle Edition
At the risk of sounding cold, I have to say this author really took an opportunity for indulgently over-sharing her own neurosis without teaching much to the lay-person about the disease of exercise bulimia.

I read it quickly since the writing was smooth and personal enough to keep the page turning. By the end of it, I couldn't help but think...what an amazingly indulgent problem to have. To be financially taken care of and exorcise your personal existential angst in a wholly self-involved way. By the end of the book, she'd hired two dietitians, two therapists, one physician. All of this while walking out on her jobs--just walking out! I mean, who has the resources to do all this? I found the author to pampered, self-consumed and lacking perspective on the range of problems that other people throughout the world live with as their reality. She found a way to profit off her experience, but I don't think she did enough to delve into the depth of what this disease looks like from a macro-level.

I'm afraid this voice and style of writing does more to hurt than it does to help since the health insurance industry already sees eating disorders as purely mental illnesses undeserving of coverage for treatment.
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