Initially, after you start a new exercise routine, you’ll likely notice increased appetite and hunger. And that’s because of leptin. Leptin is one of your metabolic hormones that manages your appetite and fat stores. The problem is Leptin thinks that the stored fat on your body is intentionally there and that you've been saving and storing that extra fat as energy that you're depending on in the future. And that's why when you start an exercise program to lose weight, your appetite will initially increase.
Appetite and hunger signals will normalize once you build up a healthy population of mitochondria in your muscle cells. Mitochondria help to improve the signaling between your metabolic hormones like leptin and your brain.
The benefits of exercise basically accumulate over time and the benefits of exercise also take time. Muscle growth and cellular restoration doesn't happen overnight. It happens over time, which is why, consistency over time is key.
Everyone’s body is different and everybody's muscle mass and muscle health is different too. So this means that there isn't any set rule on a timeline. The good news is your body will respond to movement and it will incrementally improve!
The hunger that you feel after a workout may be exaggerated and it may not even be real at first. Before you eat, drink water and slow down. Hydration is a great way to help satisfy “decoy hunger signals”. And that's because if the hunger isn't real, the water will go ahead and take it away and it satisfies it and it snoozes or delays the hunger.
Real hunger will reliably persist, which means that it's going to return and increase and become more disruptive and more intense.
Listen to this episode of the Podcast, "Exercise: How to Kick-Start Your Metabolism".