Zac Efron skyrocketed to fame in High School Musical and will be donning a swimsuit as the lead in this year’s remake of Baywatch, which is sure to be a summer blockbuster. But with all the glam and glitter, it might be easy to forget that Efron, now 29, suffered setbacks in his rise to fame. The heartthrob faced a very public battle with drugs and alcohol before entering rehab twice in 2013.

Zac Efron, who has credited Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings for helping him stay on track, has explained that the pressure of being an actor and the constant glare of the press created a “confusing” situation, in which he needed a “social lubricant” to go anywhere at all. He’s said of therapy and AA, “… it’s changed my life. I’m much more comfortable in my own skin. Things are so much easier now.”

What’s also keeping him comfortable in his skin is his dedication to health and fitness. Like so many people who use exercise as a tool in recovery, the actor revealed in an exclusive interview with Men’s Fitness that his grueling workout regimen has helped him on his path to sobriety. “When I’m very careful about my fitness and have a goal in mind, it keeps me motivated and balanced … Balancing sobriety and work and finding that comfortable place where you feel like a good person.”


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