We’ve all heard it, and very few of us our still in denial about the out of control spiral of the weight of the average American. If you have never looked at the numbers you can see in the US maps from the CDC the increases in obesity in America by state. By 1990 most states had begun tracking obesity (a BMI of 30 or higher) numbers. You can see no state had more than 14% of the adult population qualifying as obese. Look next at the 2017 CDC map (the new map changed colors), now no state is below 20% of the population being considered obese with many states having over 35% of the population suffering with obesity*. Even those who are not classified as obese, but still need to “lose a few” is on the rise.
The good news is the 2017 map is the first year that we see any state in the union reducing their obesity rates. As we turn the corner and try to get our waist lines under control I want to address one issue that is often sabotaging our efforts. Understanding this will help you not fall victim to the issue.
Working out makes you hungry so you tend to eat more after a workout. You can help keep your calorie consumption after a workout on track by eating within an hour of the workout and ensure a good amount of protein in the meal. While you are working out blood is diverted from the stomach to the muscles. Once you stop, the hunger comes on quick and usually with more intensity. Take advantage of the time lag it takes for your body to recover and eat before you are “starving” from your workout.
The second form of this problem is when you feel like you “earned a reward” or “can afford a treat” because of the tough workout. To stay out of this trap, keep the math in mind. A 150 lb swimmer who does a mile in 30 minutes burns about 400 calories. Now read the label on your favorite treat. Did you just burn more calories or consume more? A typical bowl of ice cream can be more calories then you just burned swimming a mile.
Want to determine how many calories you burned swimming? Here is the best tool I have found for determining your calorie use. http://www.swimmingcalculator.com/swim_calories_calculator.php If you know of a better calculator I want to hear about it and share it with my readers. Please post the URL of your recommended free tool below.
*In 2011 the CDC made methodological changes to the way they collected data. Making the comparison of the 1990 map to the 2017 map have scientific inaccuracies. I felt for the broad purposes used here the methodological changes did not alter the trends in a meaningful way. For more information on the methodological changes visit http://cdc.gov