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Being athletic doesn’t necessarily mean you’re healthy. I used to run for miles, restrict my caloric intake, and eat as little fat as possible. Then I’d do it all over again the next day.
Though I appeared fit and healthy, I’d actually destroyed my metabolism. By slingshotting my body into a cycle of stress-and-starvation, I had committed metabolic suicide. Due to regularly over-exercising and under-nourishing, my body was releasing a hormone called cortisol (the “fight or flight” response to prolonged stress), which prompts the body to store fat and triggers a drop in metabolism.
Not only was maintaining a healthy weight next to impossible, the scale was reading higher and higher numbers, my knees were aching, and I could feel my panic level rising. I’d also set myself up for low energy, a lowered immune system, crazy food cravings, and very confused hormones.
Luckily, holistic nutrition has come to my rescue! A yoga retreat leader noticed my distress and sat me down for my first holistic nutrition consultation. I quickly discovered that in order to get my athletic body back on track, I needed to embrace an entirely new perspective on balanced fitness and proper sports nutrition.
Healing my metabolism by re-wiring my brain and my body has been a long, challenging process. Simply eating quality, nutritious foods wasn’t enough.
Here are few key things I’ve learned along the way that have helped me emerge from a very deep metabolic rut:
Focus on high intensity exercise. Those 10 milers that I used to run on a regular basis? Not a good idea! Alternatively, shorter sessions of high intensity, even for a short time (think high knees and sprints), do wonders for a healthy metabolism. High intensity exercise prompts your body to condition itself for max performance by burning your body’s stores of sugar and fat for up to 36 hours after your workout. After a high intensity session, I can practically feel my metabolism humming along.
To see the remaining ways the author supercharged her metabolism, please click here.
This article was republished with permission from Mind Body Green you can find the original article here.
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