A friend of mine forwarded me an article last week from Time Magazine. Its titled "Why excercise won't make you thin" If you have time to read this, go read something else instead! Here's the link just in case...
The premise of this article is that if you exercise, you will want to eat. And when you want to eat, you will chose unhealthy foods. The author talks about how much he hates to exercise and when he does, he wants to reward himself with things like Blueberry muffins. He also talks about how Gatorade has 130 calories in a serving and if you go for a 20 minute run on a hot day, you'll guzzle that down in no time. All this leads to NOT being thin. The author also sites a study, blah blah blah.
Poor Laura - my friend who sent the article to me, with the innocent question, "what do you think of this"? I told her what I thought of it and as I type this now, my blood pressure is rising again, because I think this is a bunch of shit. I think this is another article/study that gives people an excuse to not take care of themselves. "Oh, working out will just make me hungry, so I won't do it"...."Oh, no wonder I'm not losing any weight, I workout, but then I'm hungry and so I eat".
Hello, people. Working out will make you hungry. You expend energy, your body wants to replenish it. The idea is that you replenish it with fuel, not crap. Instead of the blueberry muffin, you have a protein shake. Another note - 20 minutes of running is going to burn about 150-200 calories. You don't need to a full serving of gatorade (mostly sugar) to replenish. Your body isn't looking for simple sugars, your body is looking for protein and quality carbs to refill its stores.
I read these articles and I cringe, because people everywhere are looking to a magazine, with a great reputation, like TIME for their information. And this is what they get.
I know so many people who are looking for an easy answer to being healthy or an excuse to not have to work at it. The solution is simple, not easy, but simple. It could be easy, but instead it is hard. Its hard because of everything around us - the processed foods, the fast food, the snack packs of empty calories, the fat free, nutritionally void food that surrounds us in our vending machines, grocery stores, school cafeterias, mall food courts.
It takes work to be healthy. It takes preparation. If you go workout and don't bring something healthy to eat afterwards, its all too easy to hit the Starbucks and get a treat, a 500 calorie treat.
Another thing I don't understand is why so many people do workouts that they hate. If you hate to run - don't run, find something you like - spinning, kickboxing, walking, swimming, soccer, tennis, handball, karate...the list goes on and on. Find something that feels good. Because when it feels good, you want to do it, you do it more. When you hate it, its all too easy to find reasons to NOT do it. When you hate it, you find it necessary to reward yourself. And the cycle continues.
The thing that makes me the most crazy is that on www.time.com, this story is the 3rd most popular. It was posted on August 9th, so a month later, its still at the top of the list. It makes me crazy and it makes me sad. We live in a world that is full of overweight, unhealthy adults and children. Our health care system is being crushed because of this (and other things, but certainly this). How will this be resolved? Will this be resolved? Will we spend the rest of our lives looking for reasons why we'll never be something we say we want to be? Or will we just go out and be it.
Healthy and fit doesn't have to suck. It can actually be really fun. Stop believing what you read in articles like this. Go find your fun. Oh...and make good choices, whether you have just worked out or are at the grocery store. Be responsible for your choices, in health and in life. We are all we've got.