I finally made it! My first 21.1 km or 13.1 miles are ticked off the list. Today I wanted to talk about how exercise affects your appetite and your weight loss supported by scientific facts as well as my own experience. I am also going to give you some useful tips on how to make your cardio workouts more efficient and build your resistance.
First things first, so let’s start with weight loss implications that exercise has on your body. Surprisingly, what I’ve noticed from my own exercise routine is – the longer and the more intense my cardio exercises are – the more calm my appetite is. This can be explained scientifically – when you’re exercising, your body releases hormones that suppress your stress, exhaust and appetite. Moreover, exercising in the morning has proved to be a tool for a goodnight sleep, which can also facilitate weight loss. Last and the most straight forward benefit of intense exercise is the fact that you’re burning your fat tissue.
After having completed my first half-marathon, I was expecting to be starving afterwards. To my own surprise I wasn’t craving any sweets, fatty foods or junk. All I had after my exercise was a slice of chicken breast (oven-baked) on a brown-bread toast and two apples. Believe it or not, I wasn’t hungry after this quite decent dinner. During my run I’ve managed to burn 1301 calories of which around 150 grams of pure fat. Here are the details:
Now I will have to repeat myself again and say that if you’re aiming at losing weight fast and efficient and be able to maintain it over a long period of time – running is my first recommendation to you. Let’s quantify this in order to be more precise: If you run 4 to 5 times a week, for about 30 to 40 minutes per run, you are going to burn, in average (from 400 to 500 calories). Of course it depends on your weight and height, and this is just and approximation. Well, assume those 500 calories burnt per run, times 4 times per week – you are going to burn around 230 grams of pure fat per week! This sums up to nearly 1.1 kg (or 2.6 Ibs) per month of pure fat. This is purely from running, and of course if you’re supporting this with a balanced nutrition, the weight loss is going to double at least.
Obviously your weight loss and fat burn depends on your current weight, height, intensity of exercise and diet routine, and my example only illustrates a very decent exercising regimen.
TIPS ON HOW TO START RUNNING
If you’re just in the beginning of your exercising journey, you should make sure that your body gets protein, fiber and complex carbs that will give you the strength during your exercise and help you build muscle after. Some examples of such foods are: bananas, peanut butter, brown-bread, chicken, fatty fish, beans, oatmeal, milk, eggs, nuts, seeds, fruits and vegetables.
I would strongly recommend not exercising really late in the evening, since that can prevent you from having a good night sleep and thus impede your weight loss process.
What you also have to take good care of is not letting yourself loose on your diet after your exercise. I know that the feeling of achievement is a good feeling, however don’t ruin it with sweets and snacks.
In order to build up more resistance during your cardio workout, I strongly recommend NOT running too fast and rather extending the length of your run. Breathing is the most important factor in a successful cardio, so chose the speed at which you can breathe easily with no effort. Your heart should beat calmly, and try to maintain the same running pace over the entire workout.
For more resistance I also recommend doing a 10-15 minute stretch out after you’ve completed your workout. This will relax your muscles and help the toning process.
I am going to post a separate article on how to prepare for a half marathon/marathon, since I am in the process of preparing for it at the moment. For those of you who are interested, just hang on here.
I hope this has been helpful! Cheers everyone!