So you’re done hitting the gym and you start to feel good about yourself. You now imagine that you will turn into a sexy bodybuilder in no time. But suddenly, when you get out of the gym, you were greeted with various fast food chains in each and every corner. And the next thing you’ll find is yourself munching on your favorite burger and fries at McDonald’s.
We all had these moments and it’s completely normal. But is it really normal to be “that” hungry every after a workout? If you can’t make it home before digging in, then that is a serious problem that needs to be taken care off.
Based on a study, this feeling of extreme hunger every after a workout are more prominent in women. This is because women have a harder time resisting hunger, and they are most likely prepare for a second dinner after a workout.
On the other hand, men that are working out for longer durations especially at moderate speeds are more likely to feel hungrier than performing an intense workout that lasts for at least 20 to 30 minutes.
The Reason Why You’re Hungry After Working Out
- When we look at it, exercise can indeed make you hungry. Food contains calories and this is where your body gets it energy from. When you exercise, you burn calories, thus making you lose energy and then making you feel hungry afterwards. While working out, the body uses glycogen that is found in the muscles and liver as a source of energy. Once you’re done, the body begs to refill the energy it
- It is also proven that exercise suppresses acylated ghrelin (a hunger hormone) and stimulates digestive hormones PYY and GLP-1 (hormones that limit your appetite). However, the effect doesn’t last for long. And that’s why your body cries out for food each time you’re done working out.
Preventing Overeating Post-Workout
- Drinks Lots of Fluids – There are times that you feel hungry, but in reality, you’re just thirsty. That’s why it is important to drink lots of fluids before grabbing your wallet to buy a box of pizza. Also, don’t forget to bring a bottle of water with you every time you work out, just in case the gym you’re going in doesn’t have available water.
- Eat Well Before Exercising – Eat something that can truly satisfy your stomach without making yourself feel full. This limits your hunger each time you’re done working out. An energy bar paired with Greek yogurt and banana should be enough to fuel you.
- Eat The Moment You Feel It – Don’t wait too long to eat every after a workout. If you feel hungry afterwards, then grab something to eat (maybe a lite snack) to avoid excess hunger when you get home.
- Fuel Up with Protein – Protein is the one responsible for muscle buildup. That’s why it’s important to have your daily protein intake to help build your muscle each time you exercise.
- Plan Ahead – Rethinking and planning what to eat after a workout is the key to slow down your hunger. So after working out, don’t race your way to the kitchen quickly. Grab your towel and take a shower, and let your inner thoughts work what’s best to eat for dinner.
- Watch Your Calorie Count – This works better if you have a fitness tracker with you. After working out, check how many calories you’ve burned. This helps you decide and control what to eat after your workout session.