I used to exercise as a way to curb hunger. I would do a good hour of work out and that would kill any and all hunger pangs for then next 2-3 hours. Between that and chewing gum and drinking diet cola like there was no tomorrow I would somehow make it through each day on the minuscule amounts I wanted to live off of.
Now it seems that the opposite happens. I exercise and I am RAVENOUS. I usually have a pretty good appetite, but when I work out it seems multiplied x 100. This is a good thing, because I know my body is compensating for lost energy and building up muscle tissue. But it is a little unnerving. I'm used to my appetite being a certain way and when I find myself STILL hungry after eating a rather significant amount of food I end up scratching my head and feeling more then a little puzzled.
Take this hearty curry lentil/barley soup for instance. It kept me full for only about 2 hours when the average is 3-4. It's all a little weird I tell you. At least it was yummy.
At the moment I am faced with a dilemma. I love exercise and movement. As a matter of fact I need it to stay sane. And right now to be honest I feel like I'm ready to move on from just walking, yoga and the VERY light resistance training I do.
My body seems to automatically compensate for the burned calories when I work out, through increased appetite. The question is can my mind keep up with my body. I did a light work out today, and when my appetite kicked in I found myself a little uneasy. I did what was right and ate till I was full, but there was a bit of a mental struggle involved.
To be honest my appetite scares me sometimes. I think back on the times I could live off virtually no food and wonder how it was possible. I'm mentally at peace with the amount I eat now, but more seems hard for my mind and body to handle (I still have a rather screwed up digestive system).
On the other hand I still want to gain some weight, and I know exercise will help me do that if I am able to compensate by eating enough. Muscle weighs more then fat and I like feeling strong and empowered. I wouldn't do any hard-core cardio work outs like I used to when I was trying to lose weight. I would focus on resistance training and building up those muscles.
The question is, am I able to compensate? Do I trust myself to not panic when the hunger sets in and actually listen to my body? To be honest I don't know.
In other happy news today the sun came out for the first time in almost 2 months! This was reason to celebrate in my book, so I took the opportunity to stroll around the neighborhood.
Don't I live in the most adorable of neighborhoods :P
Do you have any advice for me about my exercise dilemma. Have you faced similar issued before?
PS: Thank you all for your supportive comments on my last posts. It's so good to know I'm not alone in all this craziness.