A friend suggested the other day that I was undereating for the workouts I do and it really got me thinking. I discussed it with a few other friends today, and they all (and my LoseIt! and MyFitnessPal apps) agree that I should be eating calories to cover the calories I’m burning from exercise.
Here’s what I mean:
-Say I set my calorie intake goal at 1600 calories (to create a defecit to allow me to lose about 2lbs a week while nursing).
-but I also burn 1000 calories on a day I exercise.
My old method was to eat the 1600 calories. Period. Rinse, repeat. I thought maybe I should add 1-200 cal to see if that helped.
My friends (and my apps) say that if I burn 1000 calories working out I need to now eat 2600 calories so my defecit remains at 1000. (Because apparently the larger defecit has put me in starvation mode).
Is this correct? Have I been doing it wrong????
One thought on “Does this sound right?”
it sounds weird but think about it this way, if your working out that your body needs fuel to replace what it's losing in energy, if it doesn't have readily accessible energy to feat on it will think it's starving. It's not going to think to eat off the fat you have, fat is hard to break down. Actually, if it goes to anything first it will be muscle, but even then, it's too hard.
If you burn 1000 cal in a day you should have the very least 500 extra calories on that day to help your body recover. My mother was going through something similar back in the beginning of the summer, she had been hitting the gym, running, and working out like a fiend but gaining weight and getting weaker, she was actually starving herself because like you she was burning a massive amount of energy and not replacing it. In her case she had to do two things, scale back her exercise, because she was overdoing it, mom has an addictive personality and she was going too far. The second thing she had to do was to eat more, and to eat the right things, (like not waste it on alcohol or chips) she had to really make sure that she was getting the right food, the right energy, into her. She started doing this and after about a month (because women in my family take a month to change) she found herself losing again and not as weak as she was. When I say weak, I mean it. She was getting scary, it was the first time my mother looked old to me, because she wasn't the superwoman she always was.
Another thing to think about is what to eat before and after your workouts. My trainer (back when I had two, they were awesome, had high degrees and crazy amounts of knowledge) used to tell me that I should drink a glass of milk after exercising, and not skim milk. 1% at least, one glass after as a recovery drink so my body knows I'm not starving and giving it fast protein that it can repair muscle with. Before working out fruit or nuts to give myself energy and pep. Every body is different and you know the right foods to fuel you, but remember that your body can go into starvation mode a few times a day. The goal (again according to my trainers and dietitians) is to make sure you are always satisfied, never full, and never starving.