For some of us, a big delicious treat is a welcome conclusion to the end of a workout. Guilty as charged.
All that physically activity can sure make you hungry, but don’t undo all your good work on making the wrong food choices. It’s a good idea to have something pre-prepared so you don’t get tempted to go for a quick grab of the wrong food (hey, what’s that doing in your fridge or cupboard anyway?) Or go for nature’s takeaway: a fresh piece of high fibre, filling fruit! Find a few post workout favourite food-fixes and make sure they’re always available, so that you can create habits out of healthy choices.
Even if you’ve chosen a healthy option, the other thing to watch post-exercise is overestimating the calories you burned up in your session and therefore what you are able to refuel yourself with post exercise. One way around this is to make sure you’ve fuelled your body adequately before you exercise, so you don’t try to make up for being hungry. Feeling “starving” is never a place you want to be.
And don’t confuse hunger with thirst. After a big workout, your body may be wanting to rehydrate, so make sure you have plenty of water on hand. You might just find your “hunger” wasn’t so enormous after all.
Another thing to watch out for after a workout is eating on the run. Multitasking when eating can make you overeat, as you’re not paying attention to the calories you are putting in your mouth. Similarly, standing at the kitchen bench can often mean we are picking at food and not taking into account food portions.
Keep in mind always, not just post workout, the difference between refueling and rewarding your body – physical versus emotional eating. As your exercise habits become second nature to you, you’ll find the pleasure principle lays in the exercise itself rather than the urge to overindulge.