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Excercise to eat more???

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  • TeaBeaTeaBea Posts: 14,067Member Member Posts: 14,067Member Member
    I'm on the fence. I'm one of those yo-yo dieters, lost and regained (a couple times). Good at exercise to lose weight then become a total slacker when I get to goal. Then I realized that for maintenance I need to exercise (forever) or I will be "on a diet" for the rest of my life.

    Active people use more calories than couch potatoes.
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,369Member Member Posts: 9,369Member Member
    Fer example: knee cartilage has a finite lifespan. The tiny little bones and tendons in the feet are easily overstressed. OP could run hard for two hours every day in order to eat an extra piece of pie with ice cream. And maybe blow out his knees in a few years. Or he could do a half-hour, two or three times a week, let's say that's sustainable, and stay functioning and non-crippled the rest of his life.

    Ok, you're really reaching here. Most "average" people can't tolerate running for 2 hours, period, let alone every day of their life. And for iced cream? I think most people would need more to motivate them into that kind of routine, like a shot at the Olympic gold medal. This is a nonsense scenario that has nothing to do with reality.

    Back to the point: exercise is good for you. It's good for you if you eat some food afterwards and it's good for you if you don't.
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,369Member Member Posts: 9,369Member Member
    snikkins wrote: »
    I absolutely exercise to eat more but I don't punish myself with exercise if I eat a bit too much.
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    rankinsect wrote: »
    I think it can be very mentally unhealthy if you get into a cycle where you overexercise to "punish" yourself for going over on calories.

    Agreed, but that doesn't follow from simply adding in exercise due to the calorie burn. Many people who do that also end up finding something they love and seeing many other benefits from it, and regularly including an hour (say) of planned somewhat intense activity in your day doesn't mean you are punishing yourself for eating, of course.

    I've never thought of exercise as "punishment," I put it under the "fun" category.

    16658526130_5fefdf6783_o_d.jpg
  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    Yeah, I don't either, and I also don't exercise based on what I eat -- I do eat more overall since I exercise and that's a perk.

    However, I have seen posts at MFP where people do seem to have that way of thinking, and it's not helpful, IMO.

    (Nice bike.)
  • chocolate_owlchocolate_owl Posts: 1,431Member Member Posts: 1,431Member Member
    snikkins wrote: »
    I absolutely exercise to eat more but I don't punish myself with exercise if I eat a bit too much.
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    rankinsect wrote: »
    I think it can be very mentally unhealthy if you get into a cycle where you overexercise to "punish" yourself for going over on calories.

    Agreed, but that doesn't follow from simply adding in exercise due to the calorie burn. Many people who do that also end up finding something they love and seeing many other benefits from it, and regularly including an hour (say) of planned somewhat intense activity in your day doesn't mean you are punishing yourself for eating, of course.

    I've never thought of exercise as "punishment," I put it under the "fun" category.

    And it can and should be. But it can also be a disorder - for a while, I tried to stop purging bulimia with exercise bulimia. I'd stay on the treadmill until I'd burned 1000 calories (which, really, how fun is nearly two hours on the dreadmill?) to offset parties, or do back-to-back-to-back cardio classes at the gym when my consumption was too high. It burned me out, and it didn't fix my issues. That sort of mentality is what people need to avoid if they exercise more to eat more.

    It can also be dangerous to get into the "I can eat this, I'll run it off later" frame of mind, because realistically, will you run it off later?

    I think most of us here include exercise for mixed reasons. Health benefits, enjoying exercise, and enjoying getting to eat more and stay within our goals. There's not a problem with that as long as you have the right mindset.
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,369Member Member Posts: 9,369Member Member
    A lot of people eat when they're not hungry, either out of boredom, or for emotional reasons. Exercise is emotionally satisfying (for me, anyway) and makes life a lot more interesting. It also occupies a lot of time that I guess I could otherwise spend bored and snacking.
  • jennyonthespotjennyonthespot Posts: 98Member Member Posts: 98Member Member
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    I don't have the mindset of "I will do this exercise so I can eat this food" and see how that could play into a bad cycle, especially if it becomes "I ate this, now I have to go exercise X amount." But deciding that you'd rather have a lifestyle that allows for more calories and focusing on becoming more active (this can include just including enough walking regularly to be lightly active vs. sedentary) seems to me quite sensible. I like being really active for lots of reasons, but being able to eat more is certainly a pleasant side effect.

    When I was losing my goal was to achieve it half by cutting calories and half by working up to more activity, and I didn't find that a problem--the two worked together and being active helped me want to eat better.

    I agree with all this. I definitely increased my workout days and overall activity level when I saw how small my TDEE was. BUT I primarily workout for my health and because it makes me feel good. I like to think of it as managing the overall picture instead of micromanaging and sweating the little things. I workout 5 days a week so I get muscles AND I get to eat burgers more often.
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,369Member Member Posts: 9,369Member Member
    I think most of us here include exercise for mixed reasons. Health benefits, enjoying exercise, and enjoying getting to eat more and stay within our goals. There's not a problem with that as long as you have the right mindset.

    Honestly, this is my typical mindset: I have an hour, I have a bike, it's better to be outdoors than in. :smile:
  • DorkothyParkerDorkothyParker Posts: 618Member Member Posts: 618Member Member
    It's not a healthy mindset for me, but it might work for some.

    It feels like a monetary exchange. You aren't buying calories with exercise. Calories are essential for a healthy life. Exercise is essential for a healthy life (can be as gentle or hardcore as is appropriate.)

    Sometimes when I work out I feel hungrier and I do what I can to respect my hunger signals.
  • shrcprshrcpr Posts: 884Member Member Posts: 884Member Member
    I train with weights to reach strength and fitness goals but I add in cardio or lots of walking to make my deficit bearable. I really do love walking, too, so it's not really a chore and I miss it when I can't do it. I'm very close to goal weight so my deficit is only 250/per day with a calorie goal of 1,300 net. If I didn't earn at least a couple hundred a day I just wouldn't be able to maintain even that small of a deficit. I don't count weight-lifting calories because I have no idea how to estimate them. So, my answer is yes, and no.
  • vivmom2014vivmom2014 Posts: 1,534Member Member Posts: 1,534Member Member
    Exercise started to take on too much of an urgency for me - my day didn't "feel right" without it. I wound up with a back injury and haven't been able to exercise for weeks, except for the mind-numbingly dull and slow physical therapy exercises. Boo.

    Next time (for me): balance! Days without formal or lots of exercise are going to be just fine.
  • sunnybeaches105sunnybeaches105 Posts: 2,846Member Member Posts: 2,846Member Member
    Will run for the Three Bs*

    * beer, bourbon, and booze
  • kanerz14kanerz14 Posts: 85Member Member Posts: 85Member Member
    Jruzer wrote: »
    The day that I realized that I could eat more by exercising more, and that I was in control of this quantifiable process, was the day I started being successful.

    That's one for a T-shirt. Love that; great words!!!!
  • snikkinssnikkins Posts: 1,282Member Member Posts: 1,282Member Member

    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    Yeah, I don't either, and I also don't exercise based on what I eat -- I do eat more overall since I exercise and that's a perk.

    However, I have seen posts at MFP where people do seem to have that way of thinking, and it's not helpful, IMO.

    (Nice bike.)

    Yes, this exactly.

    My MIL did the whole eat little and then exercise to punish herself if she went off plan thing. There's a post perhaps once every week or so on the forums about this as well, which is why I stipulated that exercising to eat more is a thing I do but I don't use exercise to punish myself since that's where things go wrong, IMO.
  • dopeysmellydopeysmelly Posts: 1,411Member Member Posts: 1,411Member Member
    In my n=1 study, I've found that everything is "easy" when I ignore the caloric burn of exercise completely and just focus on other benefits like increase cardiovascular health (which you can feel when the same cardio gets easier), or just being outside and enjoying moving. I guess this automatically gives me a deficit and I don't have to focus on logging food so much as long as I don't go off the rails and over-indulge. But even then, a quick workout helps to get me back on track mentally as much as physically.
  • Theresa_1973Theresa_1973 Posts: 51Member, Premium Member Posts: 51Member, Premium Member
    I don't currently eat back my exercise calories, because I am only 11lb away from my goal weight, so I was finding that eating exercise calories (even when there is a substantial deficit at the end of the day) was creating the maintenance result, so at present I have high calorie days (my TDEE calories) and low calorie days (my BMR days) and I don't count my exercise calories, as I'm a Premium member this can be set and I don't have to remember not to eat those extra calories lol

    Once I have reached my goal weight I will continue to have high and low calorie days, but I will eat back my exercise calories.

    Either way, I exercise to get fitter and stronger, losing these last few pounds is just the side effect of this exercise - I have grown to love weight training and I enjoy using my exercise bike, so I don't feel the need to exercise, I feel the desire to and if I really do need those calories that exercise has given me, then great, they're there and I can use them, but if not, great, they'll add to the deficit and the remaining weight will come away with little or no extra effort on my part.

    xXx
    edited May 2016
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Posts: 9,369Member Member Posts: 9,369Member Member
    It feels like a monetary exchange.

    It is like a monetary exchange! Or, more accurately, money is like a finite resource, which is what food is. That's why people accept money and trade real things for it.
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