This One Exercise Will Make You Extremely Hungry

This One Exercise Will Make You Extremely Hungry

Here’s the surprising reason why.

I was in my first year of college. It was Wednesday morning. The alarm started blaring right on schedule — 5:30 am. I reluctantly rolled out of bed, slid on my sneakers, and headed out the door.

My backpack felt especially heavy this morning, even though it contained only a single notebook for class, some lightweight workout clothes, and my favorite protein bar.

I walked across campus in the pitch black darkness of the early morning, with the dimly lit street lamps guiding me to my destination.

It was only a five minute walk, but in the quiet silence of the morning, it felt like an eternity.

I entered the large dome shaped building that I had grown to despise, and started chatting with some of my cross-country teammates. A few minutes passed, and then it was 6 am. My coach yelled, “ jump in!”, and like every other Wednesday, our 30 minute swim session began.


I hated those Wednesday morning workouts.

The early wakeup call, the freezing cold water, and even the smell of chlorine that I could never seem to scrub away drove me crazy.

But it was what happened after finishing the swim that annoyed me the most. For some reason, no matter how much I ate, I was never full.

My stomach was a bottomless pit.

The weird thing is, this never happens to me with any other form of exercise. I’ve ran 13 mile long runs and felt less hungry than I do after a 30 minute swim.

And everyone I have ever talked to seems to feel the same way. I’m sure many of you can relate as well. Turns out, there may be an actual reason behind why you get so hungry after swimming. Here it is.


You might be thinking that it has to do with calories.

That’s actually not the case. Swimming laps, running at a pace of about 9 minutes per mile, and cycling at a pace of about 15 miles per hour burn a very comparable number of calories.

So here’s the real theory. Swimming in a frigid pool makes you much colder than exercising on land does.

Feeling cold causes your blood vessels to constrict, which prevents hormones that make you less hungry from being released.

This is a natural reaction, similar to how bears build up their body fat as temperatures drop to prepare for a winter of hibernating.

Now, the studies that support this increased appetite theory were performed on small groups. So, it’s worth noting that there aren’t any definitive answers.

But, I also think the reasons they theorize for swimming making you hungrier are very interesting. And, I don’t believe my huge appetite that I feel every time after I swim is just in my head. I’m sure you might feel this way too.


So, why is the sport so good for you?

Just because swimming might make you feel hungrier than other forms of exercise doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. In fact, it is a phenomenal sport. There are a number of powerful benefits to adding swimming to your workout routine that you shouldn’t overlook.

Some of them include:

  • It’s a low-impact sport, so it is a great alternative to running or biking if you’re injured, feeling run down, or have chronic pain.
  • It can help your body recover from a hard run or other form of intense exercise. When I had access to a pool at my college, I loved getting in and swimming around for 10 minutes after a hard workout. It always seemed to loosen up my legs immensely.
  • It’s a fun sport. Health and fitness should be first and foremost about joy. If you can get past the initial jump into the frigid water, you’ll quickly warm up. That was always the hardest part for me. But once I was in there swimming, I really did enjoy it.

Final Thoughts

Swimming may not be your favorite sport. If I had to choose between a run and a swim, I would choose running every time. But, even if you don’t like swimming, you can benefit from its ability to help you recovery, stay healthy, and keep doing the form of exercise that you do love.

So, think about making it a part of your workout routine. And on the days that you do swim, remember to pack an extra snack (or four!), like these delicious and healthy high protein chocolate chip muffins.

Source : Medium