When you set out to lose weight, you can’t help but notice some things you never noticed before. At first, you may notice just how out of shape you really are, especially if you’re winded walking up the stairs or to the end of the driveway. Other things you’ll notice are more subtle. Hell, you might not notice them at all until you stop doing it. Here’s what I mean…
The more weight I lost, the more I noticed that morning exercise was better for me. Kinda ironic, if you think about it, because I was never a morning person. I was the one who would sleep through the alarm, or, if I did hear it, I’d hit snooze a hundred times before dragging myself out of bed. I noticed that exercising in the morning helped me increase my productivity and it always put me in a better mood. But, if I missed a morning workout, I noticed something I hadn’t realized before.
Morning exercise actually curbs my appetite all day! It’s not just me; there’s scientific evidence to support this. I’m not going to get into all of that because you’re not here to read another scientific article full of 50-syllable words. You’re here because I tell it like it is and here’s how it is…
We all have a hormone called ghrelin (kinda reminds you of “gremlin” doesn’t it?). This is the hormone that stimulates appetite. But, when you exercise in the morning, this evil hormone decreases and we experience an increase in peptide YY (I always say “ya-ya” in my head when I talk about this). Peptide YY is a hormone that suppresses our appetite. So, “gremlin” makes us eat and “ya-ya” keeps us satisfied. With me? Good.
So what have I actually noticed? My morning routine is basically the same stuff every single day. I head out for a 5+ mile walk after breakfast. I’ve missed a few walks here and there (it was raining or I was down with plantar fasciitis) and I started to notice that my breakfast wasn’t sticking with me as long as it normally does. At first, I thought it was because I was eating more overnight nights instead of my usual egg whites. So, I tested that thought. I was wrong!
On the days I haven’t walked, I’ve eaten, on average, 500 calories more than on the days I do walk. That’s another whole meal! I’ve also noticed that I snack more often during the day. I just can’t seem to get full.
You’re probably thinking that burning calories should make me want to eat more. I thought that, too, and had a really hard time wrapping my head around the fact that burning calories actually kept me from eating everything in sight. But, then I changed my thinking. It’s a built-in accountability system for me. Think about it – I walk and don’t eat a charge or I sit on my ass and eat everything in sight. Which one would you choose? Exactly!
Of course, everyone is different so this may not be the case for you. I encourage you to find out what works for your body and listen to it! Naturally, on days I lift, I tend to eat more because I have to for muscle recovery. Muscle burns more calories than fat, so the more muscle I build the higher my BMR gets. But, I get most of my calories from protein and complex carbs.
You always have to listen to your body. That’s the biggest part of any weight loss plan you follow. Your body knows exactly what it needs. Don’t think your mind knows better because it doesn’t. Always listen to your body…I can’t say that enough.
Part of listening to your body is moving it on a regular basis. It’s craving exercise and you may not even realize it. I’m hosting another 30 Day Fitness Challenge starting October 1. I’d love for you to join me! The details are coming soon and will be available here and on my Facebook page so be sure to keep an eye out. If you don’t want to miss it, sign up to receive my posts in your inbox and it’ll be delivered to you!
Is morning exercise an option for you?