Eminem says he replaced pill addiction with working out after ballooning to 230 pounds

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Eminem Reveals Reason Behind His Crazy Weight Loss After Overdosing

Eminem replaced one addiction for another, only this time it was a healthy habit.

The 42-year-old rapper tells Men's Journal that after he overdosed on pills in 2007, he was "close to 230 pounds."

"I'm not sure how I got so big, but I have ideas," he said. "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 -- and eating badly."

WATCH: EXCLUSIVE! Gwen Stefani on Collaborating With Eminem -- 'He's a Real Artist'

Eminem says when he finished rehab he used running as 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," he explained. "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. I became a f**king hamster."

WATCH: Daniel Radcliffe Performs a Perfect Cover of Eminem's 'The Real Slim Shady'

The artist got so obsessed with exercise that he says he was running 17 miles a day on a treadmill.

"I would get up in the morning, and before I went to the studio, I would run eight and a half miles in about an hour. Then I'd come home and run another eight and a half," he recalled. "I started getting OCD about the calories, making sure I burned 2,000 every day. In the end I got down to about 149 pounds."

See Eminem's changing looks:

23 PHOTOS
Eminem's Changing Looks
See Gallery
Eminem says he replaced pill addiction with working out after ballooning to 230 pounds
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05: Eminem speaks onstage at WSJ. Magazine 2014 Innovator Awards at Museum of Modern Art on November 5, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05: Eminem speaks onstage at WSJ. Magazine 2014 Innovator Awards at Museum of Modern Art on November 5, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 13: Recording artist Eminem performs onstage at the 2014 MTV Movie Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on April 13, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images for MTV)
Eminem backstage for a Fuse TV interview during the 2011 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival on June 11, 2011 in Manchester, Tennessee. (Photo by Skip Bolen/WireImage)
Eminem speaks onstage during The 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards held at Staples Center on February 13, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 27: Rapper Eminem performs onstage during the 2010 BET Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium on June 27, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 30: Eminem performs at the 2009 Voodoo Experience at City Park on October 30, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
UNIVERSAL CITY, CA - MAY 31: Rapper Eminem onstage during the 2009 MTV Movie Awards held at the Gibson Amphitheatre on May 31, 2009 in Universal City, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
Eminem (R) and D12 perform 'My Band' (Photo by Matthew Simmons/WireImage)
MOUNT CLEMENS, MI - APRIL 10: Marshall Bruce Mathers, better known as rapper Eminem, stands during his sentencing for carrying a concealed weapon in Macomb County Circuit Court 10 April, 2001 in Mount Clemens, Michigan. Mathers received two years probation after pleading guilty to carrying a concealed weapon. (Photo credit should read PAUL SANCYA/AFP/Getty Images)
MOUNT CLEMENS, MI - FEBRUARY 14: Marshall Bruce Mathers, better known as rapper Eminem, pleads guilty to carring a concealed weapon in Macomb County Circuit Court 14 February 2001 in Mount Clemens, Michigan. Mathers could face up to 5 years in jail when he is sentanced in April. (Photo credit should read MAX ORTIZ/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK CITY - SEPTEMBER 7: Rapper Eminem attends the 17th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on September 7, 2000 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 27: American rap star Eminem and British musician Sir Elton John perform on stage at the 43rd annual Grammy Awards on January 27, 2001 in Los Angeles, United States. (Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images)
Eminem performs at the 2002 MTV Movie Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 06: Rapper Eminem attends rehearsals for the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York City September 6, 2000. (Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)
(NETHERLANDS OUT) NETHERLANDS - CIRCA 2000: Photo of EMINEM; 10-06-2003, Amsterdam, EMINEM (Photo by Lex van Rossen/MAI/Redferns)
Eminem (Photo by Ke.Mazur/WireImage)
NEW YORK CITY - SEPTEMBER 9: Rapper Eminem attends the 16th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on September 9, 1999 at the Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD - AUGUST 18: Rapper Eminem attends the Source Hip-Hop Music Awards on August 18, 1999 at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
UNITED STATES - MARCH 18: Eminem (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - MARCH 18: Eminem (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION


Eminem's excessive running ultimately led to him injuring himself. "All the constant pounding from the running began to tear up my hip flexors," he said.

WATCH: Eminem Calls Out Caitlyn Jenner, Bill Cosby and Donald Trump in Freestyle Rap

That's when he turned to those trusty workout DVDs. "The Real Slim Shady" rapper says he started doing Shaun T's Insanity and P90X as his daily exercise routine, and then moved on to Body Beast. "It's just me, so it helps that the Body Beast dude is over-the-top," he said of the workouts.

He also admits that it's sometimes hard to stick with exercising daily, but he's super committed.

WATCH: Demi Lovato on Possible Eminem Collaboration -- 'I Can Relate to Him on Being in Recovery'

"I still hate pullups. They're a motherf**ker, but I do them. I even fill out the log afterward. I guess I'm pretty compulsive working out," Eminem confessed. "I feel like if I step away from it for too long, if I have a crazy week and take a five-day break, it'll be like starting over. I'm afraid that if it goes beyond that, I might lose the motivation."

He added, "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."

PHOTOS: Before and After! Shocking Celebrity Weight Loss Transformations

Eminem produced the soundtrack for this summer's boxing movie Southpaw, and like the musician, the film's star Jake Gyllenhaal also bulked up. Check out his intense workout to get in fighting shape:

Watch Jake Gyllenhaal Train for 'Southpaw'
Read Full Story

People are Reading