I saw this motivational poster on Funeral For My Fat and it made me shake my head.
I want you to feel like you’re going to die.
- Jillian Michaels
THAT is the kind of exercise that spawned a binge for me EVERY TIME. It might not have sent me to a binge that day, but it ALWAYS led to a binge. I could exercise like that for weeks on end, but the desire to binge would surface almost immediately. There is something about intense exercise that makes me hungrier.
And it’s not all in my head.
Exercise has been shown to increase hunger. This article from the Journal of Endocrinology tested that hypothesis:
During the exercise period, hunger scores were significantly decreased; however, this effect disappeared in the post-exercise period. Exercise significantly increased subsequent absolute EI, but produced a significant decrease in relative EI after accounting for the energy expended during exercise. Hunger scores and PYY, GLP-1 and PP levels showed an inverse temporal pattern during the 1-h exercise/control intervention.
What they’re saying is that when you exercise, you get a slight decrease in hunger during and after the exercise. Afterward, however, your body produces more ghrelin, which makes you even hungrier than you were before you exercised.
As of this morning, I have lost 70 pounds. I did it by walking the dog and letting her sniff every interesting blade of grass on the journey. SLOW walks and easy yoga. That is all the exercise I did during this weight loss period. EVERY time I’ve tried to increase my intensity to running or intense weight training, I have had an increase in the desire to binge and hunger sensations.
So, when I see Jillian Michaels saying that she wants you to feel like you’re going to die, it just makes me sadly shake my head. That might be very motivational to some people, but to me, it just reeks of a binge about an hour after the workout.