Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Can exercise make you fat?

The answer to that question is obviously no, however there is a catch—exercise makes you hungry because your body is burning calories.

Just to refresh, calories come from nutrients. More specifically from protein, carbohydrates and fat. And since your body needs nutrients (yes, even fat) to function properly, it asks for more when its supply is depleted. Thus, the reason you get hungry. But sometimes we misinterpret how hungry we are. We aren't careful about our food and drink choices and we end up taking in more calories than we need to.

This is why calorie counting is such a good idea. For example, as a member of MyFitnessPal, I am told to take in a certain number of calories every day. And when I exercise, I can input the amount of calories I burned and the program compensates for it by extending my calorie count for the day. Although there's nothing wrong with that if I simply wish to maintain my present self, if I ever want to drop a few pounds, I'll have to make sure not to eat through too many of those added calories. Otherwise, why burn the equivalent on the treadmill in the first place? Don't do all that hard work for nothing, my friend.

It's simple, really. If you wish to lose weight, be very careful not to take in whatever calories you burned at the gym. (That's not to say you can't eat after you workout. Quite the opposite, remember?) Or if you wish to maintain your weight, be very careful not to take in more than what you burned at the gym.

We all know how easy it is to do just that when we're hungry, and since exercise makes us hungry, that's how it can also make us fat. Indirectly speaking, of course.

Any questions? Let me know!

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