the exercise mistake I used to make

Posted on February 20th, 2013

Oh, we get competing messages, don’t we. The latest befuddlement that we’re trying to get our heads around is this “exercise myth” idea. In the “everything you used to think was right is wrong” vane, it’s now being suggested (ready for it?) that…

exercising can make us fat.

What do I think of this?

Photo by Rachel de Joode

Glad you asked, because it’s become a little project of mine lately – to wrap my head around the science of it all, and to encourage people to back off a little. To be gentle. To enjoy exercise and not use it as a self-flagellating mechanism of misery.

First, I should say…I used to do a lot of exercise

I used to self-flagellate. I used to run soft sand races and compete in 24-hour mountain bike races. I ran 10km to work when I edited magazines. And back. I went for 3-hour bush runs on weekends. I went to the gym, did chin-ups on first dates (and didn’t that end badly), and could beat my boyfriends in arm wrestles. Yes, it was an ego thing, too.

But a few years back it took its toll (the ego stuff as well). I kept trying to exercise hard. I kept getting injuries. And eventually I had to accept, that this way of doing things was somehow not right.

We are not meant to push ourselves. We are meant to move and be energised and get blood flowing…but beyond that, it’s just dumb and ineffective.

Exercise does not work for weight loss

Indeed, we’re designed to NOT lose weight when we exercise.

In his book Big Fat Lies, David Gillespie touches on the science that explains that we are designed to NOT burn off a lot of energy when we exercise. This is what enabled us to keep going and going all day and not waste away.

Then there’s the psychological element. If you’re doing exercise just for weight loss, don’t bother. Let me rephrase that. Exercise. Move. Keep active. But don’t expect it to make you lose a lot of weight.

A study compared hunter-gatherers in Tanzania with Western folk. It calculated the participants’ typical daily physical activity, energy expenditure and resting metabolic rates and found the former do move more, but they weren’t burning more calories. In fact, they found their metabolic rates the same as sedate Westerners. That’s the way we roll. Calories in doesn’t equal calories out. We’re far more complex than that.

To put things in perspective:

To burn off a piece of white bread you have to run up 20 flights of stairs.

In fact, it can make us fat!

A Time magazine cover story a while back – ”Why exercise won’t make you thin” – looked at all the evidence and found exercise may actually cause us to consume more calories than we expend, therefore negating the hard, sweaty work on the stair master. It jolted me awake when I read it. The article went as far as to say our over-exercising obsession is adding to the obesity epidemic.

Add to this, exercise can stimulate markedly acute cortisol responses which can encourages fat gain, particularly around the abdomen.

On top of all this, exercise weakens us. It exhausts the brain’s self-control “muscle” which can mean we’ll give in to a crappy meal after a big workout or get a bit lax with our incidental exercise (we drive to the shops to buy a packet of Clinkers, instead of walking there). Because we’re royally buggered – both physically and psychically.

Time concluded that, “In short, it’s what you eat, not how hard you try to work it off, that matters more in losing weight. You should exercise to improve your health, but be warned: fiery spurts of vigorous exercise could lead to weight gain.”

And, again, for perspective:

Some research has found that the obese already “exercise” more than most of the rest of us.

But! Gentle exercise for 30 minutes – just 30 minutes – works

A recent Danish study shows physical activity can indeed help shrink your person, so long as it’s around a half-hour a day, no more. Did you hear that? Thirty minutes… NO MORE!

I like this argument put forward by the New York Times’ Gretchen Reynolds:

Humans are born to stroll.

She advocates exercising 20 minutes a day.

But! You have to stick to it

A 2012 study from the University of Wyoming and a related study published in December  found that after three months of exercise, the volunteers consumed fewer calories throughout the day when they had the high-calorie shake than the lower-calorie one. Exercise “improves the body’s ability to judge the amount of calories consumed and to adjust for that afterward,” says the chick who led the study.

Longevity counts. You need to stick with the program for several months to truly fine-tune appetite control. Or stick to it for good.

Try short and intense stuff, too

This study shows short, intense workouts are best – for fat loss, increasing aerobic capacity, and reducing risk for cardiovascular disease.

This study shows that walking briskly for 10 minutes, 3 times a day was best for your health (better than one 30-minute stint).

This one shows two minutes of intense sprinting will boost metabolism over the next day just as much as a longer aerobic jaunt.

Over-exercising ages us and makes us sick

Overtraining has been shown to affect blood levels of important neurotransmitters such as glutamine, dopamine and 5-HTP, which can lead to feelings of depression and chronic fatigue.

And is problematic for autoimmune disease

The stress caused by intense, excessive exercise can negatively affect the hypothalamic-pituitary axis, and can lead to hypothyroidism. Hello, my experience! It also taxes the immune system: research has shown that it causes cellular damage which leads to hyper-activation of the immune system, including changes in natural killer cell activity, thus leading to the development of autoimmune conditions.

The best way to exercise?

To my mind, this is what works.

* Do it every day: Not 3-4 times a week. Every day. Otherwise you fatigue your decision muscle working out which days to skip.

* But keep it short and sweet: Achievable.

* Mix it up: To my mind, this is how our bodies are programmed to move. When we were cave people, which is when our bodies evolved to what they are today, one day we’d wander for hours looking for berries, the next we’re being chased by a tiger.

Me, I do something every day, even on thyroidy days and days when I’ve had no sleep. I just scale it back if I’m feeling crap.

I mix it up, pending weather and time constraints:

* Power yoga (heated, Vinyasa style): 1-2 times/week; 60 minutes.

* Swimming (walk to local seawater pool, 18 laps, walk home): 1-2 times/week; 30 minutes total.

* Weights (I have a home routine; I revert to this on days when it’s raining or I’m short on time. You can view a video of it here.): 1-2 times a week; 20 minutes

* Bush jogs (I head bush on weekends and explore beautiful bush walks in the region. It’s my sanity check after a frenetic week. It often turns into a jog, such is my energised joy with being bush): once a week/fortnight; 1-3 hours.

* Surfing: once a week/fortnight; 40 minutes.

* Jog/stair running (there’s a set of stairs near my house – I do a few laps of these or I do a jog around some parks near my place, integrating some hill climbs): 1-2 times/week; 25 minutes.

* Plus incidental exercise (I walk to appointments, ride to friend’s houses…I rarely drive when I’m in Sydney).

* To this end, just tie on your shoes and get out of the house. Don’t muck about with equipment and perfect parks. Just walk or jog. Swim at a nearby pool. Do a yoga class that’s on your way to the supermarket.

* Make it a routine. And, yes, a morning routine is best. Then it’s done. You’re feeling good. It’s a pivot point for your day. It sets the tone.

Me, I exercise in the morning.

I get up, drink water, attend to ablutions and am out the door within 15 minutes of rising. No emails. No putting on a load of washing.

I carry only a key – down my bra or in a small pocket in my shorts. Equipment just bogs you down and acts as a disincentive (“Where’s my water bottle?! Oh, darn, look, now I don’t have time to go for a jog”).

I keep my exercise kit – shoes, bra, shorts, togs, goggles – together in one pile in my laundry. I have only two – and only two – exercise outfits. Simple, no pfaffing.

I eliminate stages. That is, I don’t jog in a park I must first drive to. It creates a barrier, or disincentive, to just getting out the door and doing it.

I don’t really do classes. Again, they create barriers to just getting out of the house. That said, I have three yoga classes I like in an area I must travel to. However, I incorporate my grocery and chore shopping into the schlep, which negates the disincentive!

 

* Do it to clear your skin: That is, exercise to get fresh air, get a clear head, a lovely glow etc. – stuff that can make you feel better now. A bunch of psychologists have found that when you force yourself to exercise for future health, weight loss or body image as motivators it doesn’t work. The results are too slow, if there are any, and so we get dispirited. Doing it to get happy and feel good today does. I’ve written about this before.

* When all else fails, just walk.

Me, I’ll often do a 20 minute walk in the afternoon if I’ve had to skip exercise in the morning, for some reason.

I keep it simple – I walk around the neighbourhood and just get calm and clear.

I turn it into a flanerie.

And I love this FREE iPhone app – Moves. It counts your steps for you.

I’ll often clock up 10km in a day without realising it.

I’ve written this very looooong post because I keep getting asked about the topic. Also, I’m in a really good spot with my exercise routine and my body and health is responding really well to it, so I wanted to share what I feel works, and what works for countless experts I’ve chatted to over the years.

What are your thoughts??

 

Related Posts with Thumbnails
  • Hayley

    Finally, thank you! Sustainable exercise is the way to go.

    [Reply]

    Tamara Reply:

    Thank you so much for posting all this info! I have been caught in the heavy exercise merry go round for years, trying to use ridiculous hard core routines to lose weight quickly! I always end up feeling exhausted, injured, frustrated, not sleeping and hungry all the time. This post has reaffirmed a new decision I am going to stick to, to just exercise for the love of it. I love going for an early morning power walk, and now, I won’t turn it into a marathon unless I really feel like a run! I will do it for the pure joy of moving and to make my day a better one, NOT to lose 2 kilos in one day!! Thanks again – brilliant.

    [Reply]

    Michelle Reply:

    I have read a lot of the science you refer to as well and am working on losing weight. So I have taken the simple approach for now – just walking. I take the dog, don’t push myself super hard, it is a pleasant experience. Some days I do 1/2 hour, others an hour, often something in between. I would like to eventually be running again because I have enjoyed it in the past but am well aware that the real work as far as weight is concerned is food. I feel a definite psychological benefit with the walking and my dog is v pleased with me too.
    Michelle

    [Reply]

  • http://semanticallydriven.com Jen

    About a year ago I started running. I had visions of having a lithe runner’s body but it did make me hungry on the days I ran and I ate more. I ended up lasting for around 5-6 months and having to stop. Now I’ve adjusted my diet and I’m back with the walks and am doing pilates for strengthening. I wrote a bit more about it here: http://semanticallydriven.com/2012/08/i_stopped_running_but_its_okay.html

    [Reply]

    Anita Reply:

    I completely agree! I always had the impression that to lose weight and become fit I had to exercise heavily… so I would spend a lot of time and effort planning trips to the gym to work hard and fast about 3 -4 times a week. I didn’t see much of an improvement, but felt better that I was doing something, rather than nothing.

    It wasn’t until I moved out of home and began my own life, that I noticed a lot was based around what I putting in my mouth. It was too easy to eat whatever was around the house, rather than focus on eating fresh raw foods, and cooking from such ingredients.

    Now, I lost at least 5kg simply by walking/running every morning. I made a habit of it, and loved the way I felt. I just make sure I exercise once a day, it doesn’t have to be strenuous and tiring – I just make sure I MOVE!

    [Reply]

  • Joanne

    Thanks Sarah! This has been on my mind lately. When I was training for and running half marathons, I was the heavier than I am now. I was hungry all the time. I was also kind of miserable – focused too much on getting faster, going further, beating everyone. Not good for my body and not good for my brain (or soul for that matter). I’ve been trying to relax and make exercise more about moving and getting outside. I love this post. Thanks for synthesizing so much great information into one spot.

    [Reply]

  • Alana

    I get what you’re saying with this article. I’ve been there, on that treadmill for hours a week, seeing no change in weight. However, I don’t know that you’ve presented this opinion with enough science, and this is damaging to your credibility and frustrating to the wider community of readers.

    I felt that this article delivered your message in a flashy-magazine-attention-grabbing mode, which is the last thing anyone needs. This could almost be published in one of those horrible women’s magazines, where the abstract of one study is read and the reader suddenly becomes an ‘expert’ on the issue.

    I also get that science can be slow, but this is only because it is so rigorous. It would take a great deal of evidence before you could get such a game-changing idea published.

    I haven’t done a whole lot of research on this topic, but I thought it would be useful for me to link to an example of a good paper. Literature Reviews examine all the studies which have been done on a topic and distil them into a common formula to find an overall message. This one (http://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v31/n12/full/0803683a.html), published in the Int. J. of Obesity, is a good example.

    I do love your blog in general though! I’d just like to see a bit more caution before making such big claims.

    [Reply]

    David M Driscoll Reply:

    Here are links a number of relevant exercise theories! Please check for yourself – go to pubmed, select review articles and see what the research says (if you are interested)

    Science DOES support using Exercise for Weight Loss! davidgillespiesbigfatlies.com/32/science-does-support-using-exercise-for-weight-loss/

    Exercise Doesn’t Always Increase Appetite (And Often Can Supress It!)
    davidgillespiesbigfatlies.com/100/exercise-doesnt-always-increase-appetite-and-often-can-supress-it/

    Here’s what happens when you actually looked at David Gillespie’s references – a very different story from what he states! “Big Fat Lies” on Exercise and Weight Loss
    davidgillespiesbigfatlies.com/100/exercise-doesnt-always-increase-appetite-and-often-can-supress-it/

    Here’s another example of actually following up on studies that David Gillespie quotes in the media – telling a very different story to what he is representing
    http://davidgillespiesbigfatlies.com/109/erroneous-exercise-references-from-david-gillespie/

    [Reply]

    David M Driscoll Reply:

    Should read stories not theories

    [Reply]

    seeker Reply:

    was wondering when DD was going to weigh in!

    miss jodi Reply:

    You know, my exercise or eating habits are not influenced by, nor are determined by ‘studies’ on the issue. Most people ate just looking fir inspirational ways to improve both these areas. me included. For those folks who are interested in this side of it that’s great and they will seek it out for their own benefit. I don’t read this blog for scientific studies and I’m not sure why there are a few people who take a couple of the points in Sarah’s article as points of contention that she is wrong or misinformed about an issue. She is contributing to a subject that I think she is helping a lot of if not the majority of folks. Including me. I got so much from this article that she wrote and the scientific studies areas were not the main areas I was looking at or even could be bothered questioning. Everyone is different, sure but I think a lot of energy is spent with these long winded responses. Most folks are pretty busy and are just happy for some inspiration in their lives.

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Hi David,
    So far I’ve approved all of your comments but have abstained from engaging in your antagonistic and rather relentless sparring because it’s just not the vibe I want to encourage here. It annoys everyone.
    However, I will take a moment to ask a few things of you. First, could I politely suggest that if my ideas are at such odds with yours that you find another forum in which to express yourself. You don’t need to crusade against me. You can simply build your own “tribe” elsewhere. This is a choice and I ask that you make it. I don’t express my ideas to deliberately antagonise you and I don’t wish to offend you with my outlook on life. But this is my blog, my forum and the readers here are people I like to share with.
    Second, on a more serious note, I need to ask you to refrain from creating false twitter accounts – using fake avatars of attractive young women – for the sole purpose of poking me with retweeted antagonistic messages from you. I recently blocked you on Twitter because your relentless following of me around the social media universe was upsetting and stressing me.
    I know you have a wife and child and I implore you to think about how you’d feel if they were being targeted as you have me. Some have suggested that your behaviour is getting threatening. I don’t think this mark has been overstepped. Yet. And so I intervene and ask you politely to back off.
    Sarah.

    [Reply]

    Beth Reply:

    Hi Sarah,

    I want to thank you for your response to David’s comments: it was thoughtful, kind, civil but firm and I agree with what you had to say. He is free to find another blog or start his own and not harass you about your opinions and personal experience. Keep up the encouraging work!

    Beth

    David M Driscoll Reply:

    “So far I’ve approved all of your comments but have abstained from engaging in your antagonistic and rather relentless sparring”

    Full disclosure, one of my accounts was prevented from posting and the other hasn’t been receiving post updates for several days now. I also note that (and freely admit that it is a very small sample size and may not be representative) you appear not to engage with many who disagree with you, so I don’t think I am alone there.

    “I don’t express my ideas to deliberately antagonise you and I don’t wish to offend you with my outlook on life. But this is my blog, my forum and the readers here are people I like to share with.”

    I understand that but to accuse those who oppose you of doing so because they are being paid to or have vested interests is offensive, not to mention extremely arrogant. Can’t better educated people disagree for other reasons? I understand that you may not want you fans to see your authority being questioned publically, but with the inflammatory and public comments you make vs people who may not have the same media access as yourself, I don’t think that this is totally uncalled for!

    “Second, on a more serious note, I need to ask you to refrain from creating false twitter accounts – using fake avatars of attractive young women – for the sole purpose of poking me with retweeted antagonistic messages from you. ”

    Sorry, a friend suggested he could help getting hashtags and messages to go viral, I didn’t create those accounts – but I’ll wear that since I approved it.

    “I recently blocked you on Twitter because your relentless following of me around the social media universe was upsetting and stressing me.”

    I think you are mistaken there – your tweets may have mostly reappeared via @gillespi or @julestw9, there was no relentless following.

    “I know you have a wife and child and I implore you to think about how you’d feel if they were being targeted as you have me.”

    Probably, but if she was to publically question the professional integrity of various people and associations – I would expect some heat! I also think some of the language that you have used here (terms such as crusade or mentioning that you don’t wish to ‘offend you with my outlook on life”) is being a little dramatic.

    Now, I would like to ask a few things of you.

    1. If you are going to quote science studies, please quote them honestly and accurately – eg the AHA position statement.

    2. Consider how and why you quote research.

    I find it strange that when people share studies with alternative viewpoints, you don’t thank them and say that you will read them. Are you not interested in evidence that counters/modifies you own position or improving your knowledge on a topic? Or have you already read them and deem the inferior when compared with the ones that you have quoted? If research is secondary to personal experience, why refer to it at all? Further, you seem to dismiss them by making statements such as “posit a point of view and you can find a “scientific study” to back you up”. If evidence is so easy to come by, why value it at all? Surely by dismissing other evidence without critiquing it, you have lessened the value of what you yourself quoted?

    If you think that for every study there is an opposite, may I suggest that you then take the investigation to the next level and learn how to weigh them up and compare them? You seem to suggest that you do this with statements such as ‘based on the only comprehensive research I’ve found’ when discussing the AHA position statement, but the certainty with which you voice your opinions (and mistakes interpreting) would suggest otherwise. You may not be aware of it, but suggesting that your positions are backed by research, instantly draws into question the credibility of people who claim the opposite (even if unintended). Did you consider how many personal trainers may have had to explain to their clients that ‘exercise isn’t making them fat”, after their clients read it here? I think you need to be a little more responsible (and honest) with the power, profile and large audience that you have!

    If you don’t read the research (the actual research, not others people’s articles that refer to it), why refer to it in posts? If you agree with J that “I don’t really care if my personal experience can be backed up by research”, then why (mis)quote it in the first place? Is it just being used to drive home a point or give it more credibility? Why can’t you just say that this worked for me and others and leave it at that?

    Further, if you don’t have the skill, interest and/or time to evaluate the research, read widely and put it into context – then why demean the process after you just held it up as support and evidence? Getting back to my main point, why belittle those who have the skills to do this by suggesting that their motives are different from your own – wanting to help people?

    3. Respond to Joanna’s polite questions (especially since I assume she is one of the people you referred to in your “Yes, I eat Fruit” posting?

    David Driscoll Reply:

    I do apologise if my actions have been seen as threatening though. That was never the intention – challenging, yes – threatening, no!

    angela Reply:

    All credit to you Sarah, for a sensible and dignified response.

    Annie Reply:

    Thank you, Sarah. I echo Angela’s response.

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Hi David, can I politely ask – are you paid in any way by a sugar-related industry or body, or are you a member of an organisation that’s funded by a sugar-related industry or body? The ESSA springs to mind…?

    [Reply]

    Mr David Driscoll Reply:

    I’ve had to create a third account to reply to your question – not sure what is going on there. I’ll assume that it is now okay for me to respond since message alerts have now been reactivated and your have directly asked me a question? (but if anyone eg KM disagrees feel free to call the police or any other sanctioning body).

    I’m also wondering why you now want to communicate on this issue and no other? Why discuss this and not address the topics I bring up (such as why you misquote the AHA study that you describe as “the only comprehensive research I’ve found”)? Why can you find out that I’m married and how many children I have but you are unable to find my professional memberships?

    Can I ask you (politely) to be honest and state why you want to know this, and why you are asking in public? Is it to find a way to discredit or dismiss me without talking on topic?

    ESSA would have been the least likely membership in my mind before DAA and SDA, but I’ll play the game. Here are my ‘conflicts of interest’. I have worked for Sports Dietitians Australia and Gatorade is/was a sponsor (I think Powerade are now) and probably a few other supplement companies. I have done lectures for Sports Dietitians Australia which were sponsored by Gatorade, but have never worked for or been paid by them (Gatorade) directly.

    I went to the Gatorade Sports Science Instiute once and was bought lunch after getting a tour. I’ve also probably got a few drinks in a bag at a fitness expo or conference. Also I’m helping out friends with their internet marketing who own restaurants and a cake business (so I got some free cakes and probably a soft drink which contain sugar).

    I worked for Sydney Kings in strength and conditioning and I think one of their sponsors was Coke. Probably got some free drinks and maybe a t-shirt too.

    I would guess that the grand total for ALL of these ‘perks’ would be less than $2500 over the last 15 years. Maybe you would like to disclose your earnings from your ‘vested interest’ so we can see where the real conflict of interests lie and who’s core business is being threatened in these exchanges? Purely in the spirit of full disclosure of course!

    I am or at times have been a member of Dietitians Association of Australia, Sports Dietitians Australia, Exercise and Sports Science Australia, National Strength and Conditioning Association (USA), Australian Strength and Conditioning Association, British Association for Sports and Exercise Science, American College of Sports Medicine, Sports Medicine Australia, International Society for Sports Nutrition, Australian Weightlifting Federation, USA Weightlifting and Australian Track and Field Coaches Association. I hope I haven’t missed any. You can investigate them to see who their sponsors are – still not sure what relevance me being a member of any of these organisations has?

    If the suggestion is that these organisations have fed me a bunch of cherry-picked research, then the appropriate response would be to discredit that information with better evidence, not to simply dismiss because of an association (and hence my association to them).

    So in short, no, I’m not paid by a sugar-related industry or body! I just dislike people bastardising science and also unfairly critiquing colleagues. You can look for alternative motives all you like, but I’m not being paid or compensated in any way for calling out people misrepresenting research and trying to discredit others just to make a profit or gather publicity for themselves.

    Are you looking at taking the David Gillespie way of poisoning the well (a cheap ad hominem logical fallacy) in order to not have to address the issues raised? David tried this against Chris Forbes-Ewan is his debunking of Sweet Poison and it was pretty lame! In my mind, that really is a cheap substitute for literacy or knowledge!

    Will you be responding to Dr McMillan’s questions or is your explanation for not “engaging in your antagonistic and rather relentless sparring because it’s just not the vibe I want to encourage here” not really the reason for a lack of response?

    Mr David Driscoll Reply:

    So Sarah, will you be dismissing entire fields of university trained health professionals (not to mention anything they say) based purely on the sponsors of the professional association they belong to?

    Are you going to talk about Dr McMillan but not address her directly, despite her polite email?

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Hi David, not sure that I’m dismissing anyone. Who? It’s not really your business, but I’ve been baited to respond (I have weaker moments) – I decided to contact Joanna direct and offered to shout her a coffee to chat direct. Her comment was reasonably presented. We differ in some of our beliefs and also in the research we prefer to base our thinkings on, but I was open to chatting further and not descend into anything antagonistic. Bravo to her – she was too. And so we met, chatted. Is that enough of a response for you? Speaking of responses…I’d love yours on whether you receive any payment (in kind or otherwise; directly or via an organisation you’re associated with) from a sugar-related industry? You’ve been silent on this.

    Mr David Driscoll Reply:

    I see that someone is now removing comments – a new low in this discussion. I’m guessing that this question then wasn’t a genuine inquiry, merely an attempt to discredit entire fields of university trained professionals because of a sponsor that their professional body chooses to take support from?

    I see you like scientific evidence again based on this tweet “To all of the pro-sugar dietitians out there, yes sugar and diabetes are connected” (even if you don’t understand the difference between correlation and cause and effect.)

    Here’s hoping that you will read the studies that David Gillespie quotes re Toxic Oil – you will see that David doesn’t accurately report the findings of the Corn Oil Study and the Veterans Trial. He also leaves out a bunch of other studies and claim that only three were done. A good journalist would follow-up on these!

    Mr David Driscoll Reply:

    “not sure that I’m dismissing anyone”

    Then why ask about professional memberships – what is the relevance of that? I asked the question, not made the statement based on you questioning the professional associations of which I am a member, the question was extended as to whether or not this query extended to all members of these associations or just me?

    It is great that you decided to contact Joanna directly, I just thought it was poor form that you publicly ignored her polite email and then continued to talk about her, without addressing her, below the post!

    “Speaking of responses…I’d love yours on whether you receive any payment (in kind or otherwise; directly or via an organisation you’re associated with) from a sugar-related industry? You’ve been silent on this.”

    After going through all of my associations and related remunerations I stated “So in short, no, I’m not paid by a sugar-related industry or body!”

    Here is the full response on that topic again “ESSA would have been the least likely membership in my mind before DAA and SDA, but I’ll play the game. Here are my ‘conflicts of interest’. I have worked for Sports Dietitians Australia and Gatorade is/was a sponsor (I think Powerade are now) and probably a few other supplement companies. I have done lectures for Sports Dietitians Australia which were sponsored by Gatorade, but have never worked for or been paid by them (Gatorade) directly.

    I went to the Gatorade Sports Science Instiute once and was bought lunch after getting a tour. I’ve also probably got a few drinks in a bag at a fitness expo or conference. Also I’m helping out friends with their internet marketing who own restaurants and a cake business (so I got some free cakes and probably a soft drink which contain sugar).

    I worked for Sydney Kings in strength and conditioning and I think one of their sponsors was Coke. Probably got some free drinks and maybe a t-shirt too.

    I would guess that the grand total for ALL of these ‘perks’ would be less than $2500 over the last 15 years. Maybe you would like to disclose your earnings from your ‘vested interest’ so we can see where the real conflict of interests lie and who’s core business is being threatened in these exchanges? Purely in the spirit of full disclosure of course!

    I am or at times have been a member of Dietitians Association of Australia, Sports Dietitians Australia, Exercise and Sports Science Australia, National Strength and Conditioning Association (USA), Australian Strength and Conditioning Association, British Association for Sports and Exercise Science, American College of Sports Medicine, Sports Medicine Australia, International Society for Sports Nutrition, Australian Weightlifting Federation, USA Weightlifting and Australian Track and Field Coaches Association. I hope I haven’t missed any. You can investigate them to see who their sponsors are – still not sure what relevance me being a member of any of these organisations has?

    If the suggestion is that these organisations have fed me a bunch of cherry-picked research, then the appropriate response would be to discredit that information with better evidence, not to simply dismiss because of an association (and hence my association to them).

    So in short, no, I’m not paid by a sugar-related industry or body!”

    Mr David Driscoll Reply:

    So Sarah, I have no responded to your questions twice – now what?

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Hi Alana,
    A few things. The above is a mixture of my own personal thoughts and information about studies that have made various points about exercise. I delineate between the two.
    Where I refer to facts, I have links to either studies, or literature (eg the Time article) whoich point to further studies. You can read these at your leisure. I choose not to bog down my posts in the actual excerpts from the studies. I paraphrase. Those who want more can click on the links.
    As some of the readers above mention, my blog is a place where I share what works for me, and ideas and reads I’ve come across. I plant ideas, but refer things back to me and my experience with these ideas. You can chose to be inspired or disagree.
    Finally, as many have said to me, posit a point of view and you can find a “scientific study” to back you up. All of us have to wade through these ideas with our eyes wide open. So many of these studies compete with each other and conflict. They can be blind, triple blind, peer-reviewed or whatever. In all cases we must come to our own conclusions…. something I always invite from everyone around me.
    Hope that makes sense.
    S xx

    [Reply]

    Alana Reply:

    Thanks for replying Sarah, and for respecting my right to disagree. I aimed to be respectful so i hope you felt that.

    I agree that a scientific study can be found for almost any view – and it’s very unfortunate because it makes people mistrust science. As another reader conmented, often the bias comes when people interpret studies. One significant way this occurs is by people generalising too broadly about what the results of a study mean. This was where i felt threatened by your article – i felt that the message you were sending was too big for the data. However, as you have rightly said your blog is about what works for you and other in this community and i love that.

    [Reply]

    KM Reply:

    David, Sarah has asked you to back off.

    It is illegal to use mobiles or the internet in a way that is menacing, harassing or offensive.
    A ‘harassing’ use would be bothering someone over and over again. If you use your mobile or the internet in a way that is likely to really hurt or anger a typical person, you may be committing a crime.

    In addition, the DAA has confirmed that it expects it’s members to demonstrate professional conduct across all social media and they have a process for dealing with complaints.

  • Amber

    Thanks Sarah. I couldn’t agree with you more. I adopted this approach after reading some of your other posts. It is so sensible, doable and most importantly enjoyable. x

    [Reply]

  • http://discombobula.blogspot.com Sue

    Wow, such a great collection of thoughts and links here.

    I LOVESES THIS!!!!!!

    It resonates. And I keep hearing it from different circles lately, and there is something about it that clinks a piece of the puzzle into place for me and makes me realise that my intuition about what my body needs is spot on. As a fellow human dealing with the effects of low-functioning adrenal glands, I have had some ongoing struggles with exercise in recent years, and FINALLY I have given in to the fact that for me, it’s about doing it “light” (in comparison to gym junkies and marathon-runners). Anything more than yoga or brisk walking seems to set me back. My partner likes bike-riding and I have tried a few rides recently only to “crash” afterwards – or at least to experience if not a crash, a bit of payback after the event. So for me I am recalibrating my thoughts about exercise and what is right for me, while hoping that in the future a bike ride is not going to pose too much of a problem (my holistic GP who had adrenal fatigue issues himself has built up a daily cycling regimen by the use of L-carnitine and alpha lipoic acid, something I am hoping to delve more into as well).

    So thanks for this, Sarah! Much appreciated and very helpful in my ongoing endeavours to see the reality of exercise a little clearer :)

    [Reply]

  • JanebK

    I think the thing I really like about this is how it fits with the notion of being kind to ourselves. I have spent 20 years beating myself up about what I eat and not exercising enough etc I’m done!

    I enjoy the challenge of training for a fun run for a few months of the year but other than that, yoga and walking the dog are just fine…

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    indeed they are!

    [Reply]

  • http://www.180nutrition.com.au/blog Guy

    Nice post Sarah… From my experience I’ve found that exercise simply increases appetite and then people eat more of the wrong foods. Pretty counter productive ;)

    It’s also easy to go in at the deep end with no foundation after a moment of inspiration. Much better to form the habits first, keep it fun and slowly progress from there. It’s easy to forget exercise is a form of stress on the body and if managed incorrectly will have consequences.

    Thats my two cents worth anyway :)

    Guy

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    thanks Guy. And coming from a fit nut like you – appreciated!

    [Reply]

    Luci Reply:

    I agree wholeheartedly. when i slog it out in a huge workout, i simply compensate with a huge appetite and potentially eat more back than the intended defecit.
    Simply working out 20-30min doesnt leave me with a ravenous appetite, therefore the deficit i am after stays in tact. 20-30min workouts totally work for weight loss for me, science or no science. :-)
    also, i remember mark sisson always saying never to have workouts over an hour to avoid burning all the glycogen stores from our muscles.
    i have only just found this blog, sarah, and think it is awesome! of course everyone may not agree all of the time. keep it up!

    [Reply]

  • http://cinnamoneats.com Naz

    For a long time I was on and off with my exercise routine, I was focused in on losing weight and I would push myself until I got tired and then I’d just stop and do nothing. I hate classes they’re not my thing and I tried yoga a few times but it didn’t click for me… Maybe it was the class or maybe the type of yoga I’m not sure. Anyway walking is my thing, and luckily husband likes it too so we go every night. Sometimes it will be 40mins, sometimes we can go for over an hour. We don’t power walk or anything but not slow either just a pace we can keep up the whole way. I don’t like walking on treadmills so I like the fact that I can be out in the open air and walk… I doubt I could walk for that long on a treadmill anyway! When I do go to the gym a few days/week I do 20-30mins or the bike or I do the same on the rowing machine and then I do my weights. I’ve also started doing sprints, just a couple here and there, which I’ll build up on.

    I think the key is as you say Sarah routine and also enjoying what you do rather than slogging it out.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.fussyguide.com Christina from Fussy Guide

    OMG!
    i feel like this is the answer to every frustration i’ve ever had with excercising…..!

    now i realise why my husband is in shape all year round no matter what is happening with his workouts/eating – he enjoys both to the max!

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    We used to run stories at Cosmo called ” how to exercise like a man” along these exact lines.

    [Reply]

  • J

    I must be the only person who doesn’t get really hungry after exercising. Its odd, I usually just want rehydration. Then, a couple of hours later I get hungry, but not immediately afterwards.

    I don’t make your exercise mistake of working out to loose weight. I do it to gain strength, muscle tone, flexibility, and (probably most importantly) to keep my medical condition in check. So for me, part of getting healthier and listening to my own body’s signals has been to exercise more than I used to (though ‘more’ was really not that hard given it was not very much at all to begin with. I was pretty bone lazy). Oh, and endorphins.

    And again, I pretty much only do classes – I need the motivation and direction of having made the commitment (whether its to the business, or myself, or the person I’m going with or just to my wallet!) to follow through, otherwise I’ll chicken out so easily. And even on bike rides, I’ll almost always do them with someone so I have the promise of turning up ‘forcing’ me to go.

    But whatever works for each of us, right? I do like the constant, every day philosophy- makes the habit forming process much easier when its something you do every day. Like you said, its easier to think “Oh I can skip today” if its something you only do 3 times a week. But if its every day, then you just do it, like getting changed, eating and brushing your teeth. No questions, no fuss.

    [Reply]

    David M Driscoll Reply:

    Head on over to pubmed (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/) type in either ‘exercise’ and ‘satiety’ or ‘exercise’ and ‘hunger’. The select review articles from left hand column (in order to ensure that you get a good cross-section of the evidence and not just one or two papers that may be outliers) and scan through for the relevant titles.

    Here’s a few samples of what you will find!

    Acute and long-term effects of exercise on appetite control: is there any benefit for weight control?
    Hopkins M, King NA, Blundell JE.
    Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2010 Nov;13(6):635-40.
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20717015

    Recent evidence indicates that longer term exercise is characterized by a highly variable response in eating behaviour. Individuals display susceptibility or resistance to exercise-induced weight loss, with changes in energy intake playing a key role in determining the degree of weight loss achieved. Marked differences in hunger and energy intake exist between those who are capable of tolerating periods of exercise-induced energy deficit, and those who are not. Exercise-induced weight loss can increase the orexigenic drive in the fasted state, but for some this is offset by improved postprandial satiety signalling.

    The biological and behavioural responses to acute and long-term exercise are highly variable, and these responses interact to determine the propensity for weight change. For some people, long-term exercise stimulates compensatory increases in energy intake that attenuate weight loss. However, favourable changes in body composition and health markers still exist in the absence of weight loss. The physiological mechanisms that confer susceptibility to compensatory overconsumption still need to be determined.

    Exercise, appetite and appetite-regulating hormones: implications for food intake and weight control.
    Ann Nutr Metab. 2010;57 Suppl 2:36-42. Epub 2011 Feb 22.
    Stensel D.
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21346335

    Many studies have demonstrated that acute bouts of moderately vigorous exercise transiently suppress appetite and this has been termed ‘exercise-induced anorexia’. The mechanisms by which acute exercise suppresses appetite are not fully understood but may involve lowered concentrations of ghrelin and increased concentrations of satiety hormones, notably peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide 1. Evidence suggests that chronic exercise training typically causes a partial but incomplete compensation in energy intake perhaps due to beneficial changes in appetite-regulating hormones. The lack of a full compensatory response of appetite to exercise may facilitate the development of a negative energy balance and weight loss although there is individual variability in the response to exercise. From a practical standpoint athletes should not feel concerned that exercise will cause overeating as there is limited evidence to support this. For those desiring weight loss there may be some merit in performing exercise in the postprandial period as a means of enhancing the satiating effect of a meal but additional evidence is required to confirm the effectiveness of this strategy.

    Int J Obes (Lond). 2008 Sep;32(9):1337-47. Epub 2008 Jul 8.
    A review of the effects of exercise on appetite regulation: an obesity perspective.
    Martins C, Morgan L, Truby H.
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18607378

    A better short-term appetite control has been described in active compared to sedentary men, and an exercise intervention was shown to improve appetite control in previously sedentary individuals. The mechanisms whereby exercise improves short-term appetite control remain obscure and although the changes in the postprandial release of satiety peptides are attractive hypotheses, it remains unproven. The impact of exercise on habitual food intake is also controversial and likely to be dependent on restraint level and body weight. We hypothesize that the beneficial impact of exercise on appetite regulation can contribute to its well-established efficacy in the prevention of weight regain in obese individuals. However, more studies are needed in the obese population to clearly establish the role of exercise on appetite control in this group.

    Proc Nutr Soc. 2008 Feb;67(1):28-41.
    Effects of exercise and restrained eating behaviour on appetite control.
    Martins C, Robertson MD, Morgan LM.
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18234129

    Previous cross-sectional research has shown that sedentary males, unlike their active counterparts, are unable to compensate for previous energy intake (EI). Using a longitudinal design a 6-week exercise intervention was found to improve short-term appetite control, leading to a more ‘sensitive’ eating behaviour in response to previous EI, both acutely at a test meal and for the next 24 h. Although the mechanisms whereby acute and chronic exercise improves short-term appetite remain unknown, post-ingestive satiety peptides are likely to be involved. Acute exercise was found to increase postprandial levels of polypeptide YY, glucagon-like peptide-1 and pancreatic polypeptide but to have no impact on ghrelin, suggesting that exercise can trigger physiological changes in satiety hormone secretion that could help in appetite control and weight maintenance. In the context of an increased availability of highly-palatable food, dietary restraint may be increasingly important. Although restraint has been associated with abnormal eating behaviour, in the laboratory no counter-regulation was found in restrained eaters when presented with a buffet meal 60 min after a high-energy preload or when a pasta-meal was presented 3 h after preloading. Although restraint was not found to impact on polypeptide YY or TAG, lower postprandial glucose and insulin plasma levels were observed in restrained eaters, together with increased feelings of fullness. In conclusion, short-term appetite control seems to be favourably modified by exercise, while the impact of restraint on appetite seems to be more complex.

    Nutr Rev. 2007 Jan;65(1):1-19.
    The effects of exercise on food intake and body fatness: a summary of published studies.
    Elder SJ, Roberts SB.
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17310855

    This review summarizes published studies on the effects of different amounts of exercise on body fatness, energy intake, and food preferences in humans. The results show consistent effects of exercise on body fatness in the absence of prescribed dietary change, with a progressive loss of body fat associated with higher exercise energy expenditures in both men and women. In part, these effects appear to be mediated by a spontaneous reduction in hunger associated with participation in exercise. Insufficient data are available on whether there are changes in food preferences and taste perception that influence energy balance through macronutrient selection, so further studies in this area are needed.

    Summary – exercise doesn’t always result in increased appetite (many studies suggests that this is rare) and for those where it does, it only occasionally results in total compensation in energy intake.

    [Reply]

    J Reply:

    That was very nice of you, but honestly, I don’t really care if my personal experience can be backed up by research. I eat well (yes, as defined by most of us here!), and I exercise, and I eat when my body says I need to, not a company trying to sell me protein bars (or whatever). So its probably just a weird fluke (like many other aspects of my medical history) and I’m happy to leave it at that. For me, thats the most important part of Sarah’s message – to eat right, and do some exercise regularly, but then listen and respond to the messages your body tells you. If mine says only snack or just drink after a ride or class, then go me.

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    And J, nice response to David. Agree.

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    J, I don’t either. But the Uni of Wyoming study explains this – if you do consistent exercise every day of the year (ie it’s not just a fad), our appetite control mechanisms adjust.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.thekrookedspoon.wordpress.com Cheryl

    There are so many arguments and science that could be presented for both sides…

    For me personally I find it interesting because….
    I was a gym fiend… Everyday sometimes twice a day and for many hrs at a time. The results, for me and my body type not much, I didn’t go up in weight, I didn’t go down. I did have a better handle of stress, mentality and general well being. leading me to believe that exercise was generally good for me.

    Now I’m a mum of 2 tiny toddlers, so no time for the gym for me, although we walk, to the shops, to the park, to get out the house when tanties prevail, everyday somewhere we walk. I’m doing less physically and cardio wise ,although I have never been leaner.

    Science aside, for me and my body type this theory certainly seems to be standing true.

    It certainly is a debate sparker…..

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Yes, see my notes above about scientific bloody studies!

    [Reply]

  • http://www.mydiamonddays.com Kathy Wilson

    Hi Sarah Loved this article – it articulates what I’ve been thinking for a while. The other thing I have discovered recently is that after a 30 minute run or walk, I can sink into meditation much more easily – can’t really explain that but it makes my whole day work better. Thanks for such a thoughtful post.

    [Reply]

  • Anna

    Thanks Sarah,
    You have just inspired me to walk to the shops today and helped me decide not to get that gym membership that I’ll only use for a month or two!! A swim pass should do nicely instead!
    Love, love, love your blog!

    [Reply]

  • Claire

    What a great article, finally a sensible way to incorporate exercise into our lives. I always thought these exercise maniacs are setting themselves up for a worn out body later on in life. There is always too much emphasis on weight loss with exercise and not enough on just getting our bodies to move – which they are designed to do everyday.
    Thanks Sarah, your blog is just full of common sense, something most people seem to have lost along the way in this crazy fast paced life most of us lead.

    [Reply]

  • Ati

    I have been feeling this way about exercise for a while now – thanks for the confirmation!
    I used to slog it out a couple of hours a day at the gym, but my appetite was RAGING. And the injuries, the fatigue – they sucked big time.
    I’ve found that by exercising less (and less intensely) I don’t want to eat so much. And, at the end of the day, my body is taut and buzzing rather than overworked and injured.
    Plus, now I have more time for other activities, like cooking and meditation, which used to be the first things to go on the back-burner.

    [Reply]

  • Anje

    Another amazing article! Thank you Sarah. You have made me realize just doing little things are excersise. I have to go downstairs to my laundry then up the stairs again and then go down the stairs outside to hang the washing and then back upstairs to the house so that is,an excersise itself!

    [Reply]

  • seeker

    ok i didn’t even have the energy/desire to READ so much about exercise haha!
    i have never been much of an exerciser, have always detested gyms, and don’t like risking injury!! my life so far hasn’t suffered because of it. i love walking though … anyway …

    i would just like to comment on what i’ve learned about why people often feel hungry and exhausted after exercise – it is because of how we breathe … if we can keep the breath steady, smooth and dont take huge lungfulls of air into the body, we are less likely to feel so hungry, or light headed etc.

    i just found this http://youtu.be/GNmu99RuSqc and after listening to Simon’s explanation again, i don’t feel too bad for not trying to explain it all FULLY in my own terms!!!

    this is how i practise & teach yoga, and i am conscious of how i breathe when im out walking … just thought i’d share it, it may be helpful to some of you …

    :)

    [Reply]

  • Kate

    Hi Sarah,

    Great great post. Something everyone seems to have an opinion on but I guess it comes down to each individual really. Like you, I need to move everyday. I will never say that I am too busy or don’t have the time. Get up and move people. Sometimes I will go for an hour run because that is what I need to do, sometimes I will go for a walk along the beach, do weight training, go to yoga/pilates, play netball with my friends, hike through a mountain, or take a ballet class. The thing for me is that I need to mix it up. If I don’t eat whole heartedly, and move my body, I feel like crap and who wants to feel like that?

    [Reply]

  • Tommy

    Exercising will not make you fat.Where on earth do you get these theories of yours? Doing mindless endurance based exercise for 3 hours at a time and then being so tired that you do nothing except sit around eating all day may make you gain weight but a smart exercise routine and eating plan will benifit anyone.

    How about 3x 45 minute strength sessions per week as well as 3 x 45 minute cardio sessions on alternate days with one day off a week.Combine that with a sensible eating plan and you will definitly see positive results in bodyshape and mental outlook ect.All in under 5 hours a week.

    You seem to be an extremest Sarah who chops and changes from one fad to the next when it comes to exercise and diet ect. Consistent sensible exercise and a balanced diet is what gets results..not the latest paleo fad or half marrathon running plan.Also,women need to strength train the same as men do to change their bodyshape..cardio alone will not get the job done.

    [Reply]

    Nicky Reply:

    Thank goodness for a sensible comment!

    [Reply]

    Sara Reply:

    Um. “Consistent sensible exercise and a balanced diet”. That’s what she’s saying. Read her own workout routine – which includes strength training – and it’s almost exactly what you suggest! By my calculations it works out at about 40 minutes per day not including incidental exercise.

    I think her point is a) our motivation for exercise should not be weightloss and b) we shouldn’t overexercise and punish ourselves (because once you go past a certain point it’s counterproductive anyway) and Sarah used to be a self punisher like many of us (as I sit here with my overuse injury after thinking I wasn’t doing enough).

    [Reply]

    Tommy Reply:

    Um.. so what took you so long to realise this? Your motivation for exercise may not be weightloss but if you are overweight you’d sure better be thinking about doing some exercise if you want to get down to a healthy weight.

    Weightloss is calories in verses calories out.It’s that simple.Eating fad diets like paleo or zone or zero sugar ect ect are not going to get you any better results than just eating fresh healthy food,drinking mostly water,avoiding alcohol and doing some exercise most days.Every second post Sarah writes is about how great she feels after going on her special I Quit Sugar Diet and if you hand over your 30 bucks you can feel great too!!

    I don’t care but really, it’s hippocritical to point the finger at vested interests when Sarah is selling something herself.A handfull of lollies or an ice cream or a piece of chocolate once per week won’t kill you if you are being consistent the rest of the time.It’s hysterical and simply untrue to suggest otherwise.

    [Reply]

    Sara Reply:

    Um, cos clearly I’m an idiot? Patronise much Tommie? I sure as hell hope you’re not in the exercise/health industry. Your bedside manner is horrible. For the record I’m not overweight. But if I was do you really think that’s the way to address me? And for the record I do exercise (how do you think I got an overuse injury??). My point was you missed the point. Sarah is addressing what many people do in regards to exercise- ie overdo it.

    Of course people exercise for weightloss! How can they not when that message is everywhere! It may not be the right reason (which is Sarah’s point!!) but it’d be remarkably ignorant to think it’s not a huge motivating influence. If you’re balanced and have it all worked out than good on you! The fact of the matter is most people aren;t and don’t. People have all manner of reasons for pushing themselves past their exercise limits. Overachievers, anxiety, not feeling good enough, competitive, and of course weight loss. Sarah was addressing those people. Those who overdo it. If you don’t then good on you but I’d assume from the responses you’re in the minority, at least on this blog. At least have the good grace not to insult the people who find the message resonates with them.

    Also, it’s not as simple as calories in and calories out. The human body (and mind!!!) is far more complex than that and you have to take into account psychology as well. The calories in calories out argument works perfectly. If we were robots. It would also mean I could subsist on 2 Big Macs and a Coke a Day and nothing else and all would be hunky dory.

    And if you have an issue with the IQS message perhaps stick to those posts (though why you’d be reading a lifestyle blog that you object to the lifestyle of is beyond me? The whole point of it is to follow Sarah’s journey in finding what does – and doesn’t – work for her, or did you miss this point too?). But it’s not relevant here. You can’t throw that argument in to counter this post.

    tommy Reply:

    Did I say you were overweight? I said IF SOMEONE was overweight then if they were serious about losing weight then they’d better think about doing some exercise if they wanted to lose it.But you feign offence when I’m not even talking to you.How old are you? 15?

    Why do you feel the need to tell everyone what point Sarah is trying to make? How would you know?

    If you ate 2 big macs and a coke a day and burnt more calories than they contain then yes,you will lose weight.Would you be healthy?, no

    And since you get your exercise advice off google and are laid up and unable to exercise due to your fabulously sucessful attempts at formulating a training program maybe you should refrain from trying to come accross as some sort of expert.

    miss jodi Reply:

    You know, Tommy how many people are out there selling books they have written? You are spending a lot of time and effort on this issue you have with this article. Why are you bothering with this? Sarah wrote a book, several actually. And yes she is promoting it. She is kinda quietly doing an awesome job considering its #2 on the best seller list. If you have a problem with that maybe you should follow up with all the other thousands of authors promoting themselves and their books. You will probably find there are not half as many who are as brave and open and prepared to put themselves out there for this exact kind of judgement and ridicule you are offering. Positive stuff sticks but your kind of input falls away pretty quick, maybe try taking the bits you find useful for yourself and wish folks well on their journey because its theirs. Not yours. Namaste comrade

    tommy Reply:

    Obviously pointing out myths and misconceptions is not appreciated around here..The author of this blog can write as many books as she wants..no one cares.Some people may want to question some of the advice or the odd blog post but we can’t do that here because it’s judgemental and not good for our journey.The points I pointed out were minor..no need to act as though the sky is falling in.

    Sara Reply:

    Oh, and my point about calories in and calories out was exactly what you said. It’s a flawed system as it focuses on weight only (and even then doesn’t really work) but ignores health (and human psychology). Thank you for highlighting exactly what I was trying to say.

    Lauren Reply:

    Tommy weight loss is not calories in calories out if your hypothalamus is broken, and if you ARE overweight, it ALREADY IS broken. Therefore the calorie method is utterly useless.

    If you are overweight you should NOT exercise BECAUSE your hypothalamus is broken. First you need to fix it, and only when that is fixed and numerous other system functions and biochemical mechanisms are functioning properly do you begin to integrate exercise. Unfortunately not many other practitioners know about any of this.

    Sara Reply:

    Sigh. Fine Tommy. I’m pointing it out because You. Don’t. Get it. Your comprehension skills are abysmal and your communication skills are worse. Given you were responding to MY post you can hardly blame me for assuming you were directing your comments at me.

    I admitted my injury was my own fault due to overuse and a pronation – a stupid mistake made by many. I’m hardly the first person to injure themselves running (and from someone who uses books from the 1900′s for information I’ll take google thanks). Plus I’ve had extensive training regardless – this was specific to running and how far I should push for distance. I’ve never purported to be any kind of expert at all. You’re original post was aggressive, condescending, misinformed and focussing on the wrong message. Your response to my attempt to politely suggest you hadn’t read the post correctly was worse. Don’t back peddle now and say your points were minor and you were just pointing out your opinion. There are better ways to disagree with the comments on Sarah’s blog.

    I’m 36 by the way. Not that it should matter. How old are you?

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Hi All, I invite competing ideas and thoughts. I implore that sarcasm, passive aggression, aggression etc be left out. Tommy, to your point about vested interests – I’ve written about this often: I have a vested interest in sharing the quit sugar message, but I’m clear about it. You know what I’m selling. It’s upfront. My issue with vested interests is when it’s hidden. And when someone speaks out as a “scientist” and not as “an author of a book on the subject” or as “someone being paid to endorse a scheme/product”.

    [Reply]

    Tommy Reply:

    Fair call Sarah..I was only trying to point out that most people probaly know that too much sugar is bad for them..but it’s not like I’m saying don’t buy you book because your book is more of a cook book than a dry essay type book anyway so even people who already understand the message will still use it for the recipees.All good, I’m sure it will continue to do well.

    Tommy Reply:

    Sara,

    Lets just agree to disagree on this post and I’ll try to stay on message or what you veiw as being on message for any other posts I comment on.No,I don’t solely rely on old books and magazines for my info but it is fasinating to see that even if people from earlier times didn’t have the latest reasearch available they often instinctually knew what was good and bad for their bodies..Yoga is thousands of years old,Pilates about a hundred years old..You’re probably more connected to past exercise principles than what you realize.
    Yes,anyone can get shin splints so my comment was below the belt..so to make it up to you I’ll give you a little tip: forget your flippers and get a flotation belt and head to the deep end of your local pool.You should be able to run as long as you want pain free and will still get a good cardio workout.For your upper body get a bouy between your legs and swim only using your upper body..no kicking.Your shins should be healed after a month or two.
    And I’m 35.Don’t look a day over 40 ;)

    [Reply]

    Sara Reply:

    Point taken Sarah and Tommy, all good with me. Sadly I WISH it was shin splints. This is quite a bit nastier and somewhat genetic (it’s inflammation of the tendon sheath, like tennis elbow but in my shins) but slowly healing. A buoy between my legs isn’t much use for scallop diving unfortunately. That’s what I needed the fins for ;) But I like the idea of deep water running so I may indeed give it a shot. (and no, I promise that was not a sarcastic remake, just a bit more info about what I was doing with fins on!)

    brenda Reply:

    Here here Tommy! You are absolutely SPOT ON!!! Thank you for your sensible advice – exercise makes you fat – FAR OUT!!

    [Reply]

  • miss jodi

    Geez. Reading all these responses makes me want to go out and get myself an almond milk dandelion chai latte with some nutmeg on to and a few sunflower seeds! And put my feet up and watch the latest episode of ‘girls’, y’all! I’ve done my Bill Pearl adjusted weights program for the day (a sensible back and hamstring set) and 1 km walk. So have fun debating, this. That’s all my thoughts on it. Great article with or without responses :P x bye!

    [Reply]

  • http://www.ekougi.com EKougi

    I imagine myself living to 100, and I think about what I want my body will be like at that age. Any exercise I do now is all about 100 year-old me. Because I have a desk job, I focus on muscle mass, bone strength, and flexibility

    [Reply]

  • http://www.instagram.com/bronwynq Bronwyn

    Your blog post is refreshing and reaffirming. I’ve just started an eating plan (very low carb and fat, NO sugar, and high protein) and it’s recommended to simply do 30 walk daily. I get that 5 out of the 7 days for the last 3 weeks and have lost 5 kilo’s (35 to go!!).

    Hard full on exercise has never been thing, I’ve never enjoyed it but attempted to do it a few years ago, because it’s always been the thing to do to maintain weight and get it off, or so I thought. It obviously didn’t stick as I didn’t continue. I’ve always enjoyed the approach of a doing it indecently and as part of life, similar to what you said, going to to a national park and just walking or a fun game of ball toss on the weekend and potting around in the garden.

    I’ve always known that a decent diet and some movement is the key. And clearly this time, I’m getting it. I’m going to purchase your I Quit Sugar book shortly, as I think the majority of your recipes would be relevant. But Thank you for writing such a great book!

    [Reply]

  • Janneke

    My routine is three pump classes a week. I’m addicted. Having times to vomit to helps me be motivated to go. Seeing the same people each week helps too. Goes against most of what you have said but works for me. I’m fit enough and toned

    [Reply]

  • http://www.alldayheels.com.au Sara

    Ahhh, I wish I’d read this 6 months ago. I got ‘inspired’ and started running. Don’t get me wrong, I loved it, but I would push myself every single time. And not give myself adequate rest between runs. Every bit of ‘google lore’ (silly me) suggested I should be running more so I did.

    First week of Jan I thought I had shin splints. Seemed to be expected but turns out it’s tenosynovitus of the shins – a nasty little bugger of an overuse injury that has seen me not even able to walk for exercise these past 7 weeks. Even a swim with some flippers the other day exacerbated it. Once I’m recovered I have made a promise to myself to be gentler. Alternate walks with runs and a spot of yoga here or there. If I can get to some weights I might throw that in too (I don’t belong to a gym as it’s too costly for how much I’d use it but interested in home weights once I can swing a cat in my half renovated house/junk zone)

    Interestingly though while I did find that while my hunger increased I was more inclined to eat better and healthier options – I’d be interested to see is the kind of food we crave is affected?

    [Reply]

    Louise Reply:

    YES!!! I totally agree! When I do a lot of exercise (like riding my bike for transport) I crave food- veggies and quinoa and spelt sourdough…If people find that they put on weight when they exercise more, chances are that they are eating high kilojoule foods to recover. A diet full of veggies and fruit, nuts seeds and wholegrains, combined with a whole bunch of exercise that challenges different aspects of your body (weight bearing for bone health, cardio for heart/lungs, resistance for muscle strength/tone) seems to me to be the obvious key to a harmonious body/mind existence. And if you’ve got extra weight to lose, increasing exercise while maintaining a healthy diet may well serve to lose that weight. Is it just me or does this seem obvious?

    [Reply]

  • Mia Bluegirl

    I think you mean well but your sentence structure has betrayed you in a few instances. Vague pronouncements like “we’re designed to NOT lose weight when we exercise” are ridiculous and untrue. “Exercise” when used as a blanket statement for any kind of movement is just silly. But later on you make the distinction between chronic cardio-type exercise and the gentle, more sensible kind, which is important. Humans can move constantly for hours and hours per day without damage or weight gain – the difference is in the intensity.

    I’m actually a little disappointed that there is no Blue Zone experience in this post. How much greater it would be to exercise for good health and longevity, instead of weight loss! (Am I the only one who finds weight loss talk banal? If I have to spend ONE more lunch listening to a brilliant and well-educated woman talk about nothing but her fat cells, I will scream. Anyway I digress.)

    Calories in vs calories out works in a healthy body. Not us “compromised” folk with autoimmune disease, hormonal or endocrine problems, or anyone on medication that alters the way the body stores fat. I think the vast majority of Sarah’s readers fall under the latter category, unfortunately.

    [Reply]

    miss jodi Reply:

    Your last statement would seem to be a generalisation and I do not think this is the case. I am not sure what leads to to a ‘vast majority’. From the hugely varied responses and comments in the Sarah Wilson community, I would disagree with you

    [Reply]

    Jason Reply:

    Three laughable paragraphs.

    “I think you mean well but your sentence structure has betrayed you in a few instances”. You sound like a school teacher!

    “Am I the only one who finds weight loss talk banal?”
    Didn’t you just read a blog post about weight loss? Why?

    “Calories in vs calories out works in a healthy body”
    Really??

    I think you need a root ;)

    [Reply]

    Mia Bluegirl Reply:

    I need a root, huh? You offering? ;) Oh that’s right, you need to hide behind annonymity…

    Sad little man. Awww.

    [Reply]

    Nicky Reply:

    Good golly sounds like quite a few people have had a tough day!

    Jason Reply:

    Mia, you may find this story in todays SMH interesting..

    http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/proof-is-in-the-eating-all-kilojoules-not-equal-20130220-2ervg.html

    Sara Reply:

    Common, play nice Jason. Great article though!

    [Reply]

    Sarah Wilson

    Sarah WilsonSarah Wilson Reply:

    Jason. You’re back. PLEASSSSSSSSSSE don’t say vile, unkind things to people. And, no, a winky emoticon does not tone things down, trust me.

  • http://www.livehealthysimply.com Jessica Nazarali

    FANTASTIC POST! Reassuring to know I’m doing the right thing by not over doing it at the gym.

    [Reply]

  • Nicky

    Interesting how those who don’t like exercise are loving this post when in actual fact Sarah seems to do quite a lot of exercise.
    Short and tough, that’s what works for me. Sweat and push hard! Afterwards is the best feeling ever. I never get colds or sniffles and I reckon its cos I get my blood pumping 3 -4 times a week religiously.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.myglorybox.com Charina

    Very well said and researched, as usual, Sarah. If you check out my website, I sort of sing high praises to you. And yes, mere exercising simply does not work. The food intake has to change. Better food choices – less sugar, less carbs.

    I exercise for 30 minutes 5 days a week. I feel I need to give my body a break every 3rd/4th day. Also, kids, ya know! But I will incorporate some form of walking to make it 7 days.

    I am glad I found you!

    [Reply]

  • Vee

    I hate exercise. I always have. I can’t crack the intense dislike I have. I’ve tried yoga, Pilates, running, strength training. I hate it!!!! I know people will say, just walk for twenty minutes a day…it feels like a lifetime! Everyone keeps telling me I just need to do 20 minutes three times a week. Doctors have told me my lack of exercise contributes to my infertility. I’m not overweight at all. But I can barely climb a set of stairs without getting puffed out. Then I get angry with myself because I can’t grow any good habits. Anyone else struggle like this? I have a fitness fanatic husband so you can an imagine how that goes….

    [Reply]

    bronwyn Reply:

    I did think like this as well… that a 30min walk would be boring and feel like a life time. Hate getting hot and sweaty. Think of any excuse and it fits. But once your there doing, it’s surprising how fast it actually does it go. What we mentally think and what it actually is, are two different things sometimes. If you can only do 15 mins, then just do 15 mins. 3 songs on your ipod. Start small and work up to it.

    I also used to have a very fitness fanatic (ex)boyfriend and realized I just pushed further into hating exericse because he loved it so much and would push me into it. Maybe you’re doing the same? Maybe not.

    Hope that helps some. Cause I feel your pain.

    [Reply]

    Bridget Reply:

    Have you had your thyroid checked? An underactive thyroid can cause fatigue easily with little to no exertion apparently. Or some other health issue perhaps that’s behind it (hopefully minor and easily fixed). Sorry, just trying to say that it’s not you, it’s not that you’re lazy or unmotivated or anything like that, maybe it’s your body that’s letting you down somehow. Maybe a trip to your GP for some tests might be in order to find out what gives and maybe be able to do something about it?

    [Reply]

  • Rachel

    I was really rather thrilled when I went to gwinganna that they were only suggesting small amounts of gentle exercise that you can incorporate into your daily life thus sustainable. They were saying 1 walk, 1 bike ride, 1 swim, 1 yoga and 1 essential five per week. As for me I’m way too lazy to be so organized. I walk to work everyday (15 mins each way), use the stairs at work not the lift, ride my bike at weekends and jump in the communal pool and do 6 lengths once or twice a week. The BIG problem here in Australia is the extremeness – people are either out cycling 100km before breakfast in all that weird sponsored Lycra or they are obese. Can’t believe that by 2025 they predict 80% of Aussies will be either obese or medically overweight. If people built exercise into their daily life – walking to the corner store, walking the kids to school, cycling to work etc we would not have all these issues…. Oh yeah I forgot everyone wants to live in a 6 bedroom mansion in suburbia miles from shops and services and so everyone drives their car everywhere …..

    [Reply]

  • Bridget

    Thanks again Sarah for a great post! You get lots of people talking and also pondering their choices in life at least, which is a good thing, because I personally believe that it’s healthy to question one’s self from time to time. It keeps one humble and open to new and potentially better ideas! My own experience has taught me that exercise to lose weight never really worked for me, but definitely agree that moderate and gentle but regular exercise for its own sake is a healthy and necessary thing to do. I just feel that a lot of things that we’ve been told about diet and exercise for the last 20 or 30 years has been a big crock, and it’s beginning to dawn to many of us that maybe we don’t have to keep believing in that old stuff anymore. Because it’s not holding up.

    And science? Well science seems to change its opinions every 5 minutes if you think about it. Not saying that we shouldn’t place some trust in it, but maybe it helps to admit that good science is not immune to bad interpretation.

    This is what Gary Taubes, the author of Good Calories, Bad Calories, and Why We Get Fat And What To Do About It, says about exercise, and I think it’s spot-on: “People in nutrition are so keen on making us lose weight by exercising that they’ve forgotten the fact that the more energy you expend, the hungrier you get. Imagine I asked Alice Waters, the great chef from Chez Panisse, to my house to make a 12-course feast, and you’re invited. And I’ve got a pastry chef coming and a gourmet butcher—in Berkeley they have gourmet butchers now. Bring your appetite!

    “The two things you’re likely to do are that you might skip lunch, and you might exercise more. You might even say, Look, Taubes lives three miles from my house—I’m going to walk there, and by the time I get there, I’m going to be hungry. The joke is that the two things we tell people to do in order to lose weight—eat less and exercise more—are the exact two things you would naturally do if you wanted to make yourself hungry.

    “When you look at the data from research on obesity and exercise, there’s no compelling evidence that exercise has any effect on weight. The American College of Sports Medicine says in its guidelines, which were issued jointly with the American Heart Association, that it’s reasonable to assume that if you exercise more, you’ll be less likely to gain weight over time. But in those same guidelines, it also says that so far, data to support this hypothesis are not particularly compelling. Which is the kiss of death. It’s a 100-year-old hypothesis—if the data aren’t compelling by now, you can be
    pretty confident that the hypothesis is wrong.”

    His ideas about how to lose weight – through a radical change in one’s diet, turning everything that we’ve been ever told about diet and exercise upside-down and inside-out – to me is some of the best advice that I’ve ever read about. In the 4 weeks that I’ve followed his advice, I’ve lost 8 kilos without strenuous exercise (just a pleasant 30 minute walk along the beach daily). It’s amazing, I can’t recommend it highly enough. Thanks to a reader of this blog who referred me to it, I’m SO very thankful! Thanks also to Sarah for making it possible for such an exchange of positive ideas to take place!

    [Reply]

  • Dee

    Incidental exercise is the way to go! Last year I went overseas for 3 months,after losing 26kgs on a low carb diet. I started eating anything I wanted as I didn’t want to miss out on the breads and pastries in Europe, but didn’t put any weight on probably because I walked everywhere. As an independent traveller using buses and trains lots of walking was necessary as I am allergic to taxis! Have put on half the weight I lost as I continued eating the same way after I returned home eight months ago. Am now in week three of I Quit Sugar and going well, cravings are lessening and hopefully weight loss will follow. Sarah, your post has insPired me to do more walking and cycling, thanks for the inspiration!

    [Reply]

  • http://cleancalmconditioned.com Mandy

    I strongly agree with this notion. I was cardio crunching and feelings my weight/well-being plateau. Once I slowed down and walked mostly for pleasure than for “pain,” I saw my body go into balance and the weight melt away. Now, I suggest this to all my clients. Thanks!

    [Reply]

  • Rachael allanah

    I just love this Sarah. I think there is a lot of sense in 30 minutes a day, variety and not over doing it. Sure, sometimes go hard but constantly over doing it to exhaustion everyday can’t be good. Thank you, as always
    Rach

    [Reply]

  • Andrea

    Hi Sarah
    I always eagerly read your advice and agree with your thoughts. And the pre-baby me did exercise regularly first thing in the morning (I am definitely a yoga/walk type person, not a gym goer) but find it almost impossible with a small child. I work and have to get up early before my son rises so I can get ready, then get him ready, breakfast and then it’s out the door to childcare and off to work. Then the routine reverses in the evening. I don’t like to make excuses but I just can’t work out a way to get my arse out the door (I do do yoga twice a week – evening and weekend). I would love a guest post or just advice/tips from a busy mum on how they put some of your ideas into practice (without having to wake up at 5am, which is the only way I see that I could get out of the house). Thanks

    [Reply]

    Sophie Reply:

    I have the same issues. Life with kids sure is crazy. I am slowly finding the balance and the thing that struck me here was walking or exercising for pleasure not pain. Kids love activity and movement so a raucous swim in the pool, playing chasey, walking with one on your back, take one for a bike ride, teaching my son to ride his bike involved lots of short runs and walks and some huuuuge smiles and laughs. I am slowly bringing my physical activity back to family time and away from the gym. It scares me a little as I am not sure if I will get “enough” in. Worth a try though!

    [Reply]

  • Grace

    Brilliant post Sarah. Very enjoyable. And DOABLE for 99% of the population.

    My basic understanding from undergraduate physiology in laments terms is that the brain uses carbohydrates during hard training as it is the most readily available source of glucose for the brain but that during a rested state fats and protein are the preferred macro. And obviously you can train to be fat burning as opposed to carb burning in exercise.

    This is also relevant and interesting http://www.marksdailyapple.com/a-metabolic-paradigm-shift-fat-carbs-human-body-metabolism/#axzz2LVY76Aok

    I’m sorry you get these persistently negative lurkers. I hugely appreciate what you do and the discussion that you generate.

    [Reply]

  • Grace

    Also, excellent and most motivating of videos about getting your 30 minutes of walking a day. Fun animation to boot

    [Reply]

  • Grace

    Also, excellent and most motivating of videos about getting your 30 minutes of walking a day. Fun animation to boot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUaInS6HIGo

    [Reply]

  • Jill

    Exercise – take it regularly, not seriously.

    After reading some of the comments posted here, perhaps a few posters need to take a jog around the block and calm down too…

    [Reply]

  • Jane

    Just because something can’t be scientifically measured does not mean it does not exist. These relentless adherents to science, pubmed et al really get on my goat with their superiority complexes. They seem to not have the where-with all to contemplate subtlety or the beautiful complexity of the individual, and our differences. Personally I wish they’d bugger off and hang out together and enjoy competing over their ability to utilize a search engine.

    That is all.

    Oh… THANK YOU Sarah for being a voice of reason. Cheers.

    [Reply]

    Kerrie Reply:

    Jane – well said!

    [Reply]

  • dee

    Hi Sarah, I have battled with my weight for a long time the only time I have achieved my goal,weight was by using excercise as you have described. Any otherway leaves me feeling hungry which leads to eating too much… And so it goes. People seem quite defensive about your comments… As with everything I am sure there is not a one size fits all model… I am really grateful for what you do, I read your posts and can relate strongly to many of them. Thank you

    [Reply]

  • Emily

    Whenever I go on holiday, and just walk i lose weight. I come home and am doing 1 hour intense classes again, then wonder why the weight piles on again. BUT I am so set in this mindset – I can’t seem to break the habit. I’m now the heaviest I’ve been for years but I’m too afraid to slow down my exercise!

    [Reply]

  • Sarah

    Sarah, thanks for a great post. You put a lot of time and thought into your posts and many of us appreciate it.

    To all the people banging on about scientifically proven theories that state a different position to Sarah’s, you need to understand that what Sarah has written is purely her experience and some scientific reasoning as to why is working for HER. She is merely encouraging others to join her, if they feel that their current exercise regime is not working for them. Obviously every body is different and will lose/gain weight differently; therefore Sarah’s advice may work well for some and not others.

    There is no need to post an overwhelmingly long “cut & paste” research paper as a comment to justify your antagonistic attitude toward her. I guarantee that the majority of readers just scroll past it. So save yourself the trouble.

    I’m always inspired by Sarah’s musings and well presented information. Overall, I think that for overweight people who feel intimidated by the thought of intensive exercise for weight loss, this article encourages them just to get out and about. 30 mins of varied exercise a day is more achievable and more sustainable in the long term.

    Anyway just my thoughts :)

    [Reply]

  • http://www.mikewilde.com mw

    Even your toned down routines sound a bit butch to me ..
    But I guess I’m pretty active as well.
    Broke my arm in 6 places two years ago .. that’s all healing quite nicely.
    Was and am pretty gentle with the rehab ..
    Initial prognosis was 80 % mobility would be a good outcome ..
    and I probably have 95 % mobility today ..
    still a lot of nerve pain.
    I think you are helping a lot of women here Sarah.
    Many people just aren’t that familiar with their bodies ..
    When we apply our inner voice to our bodies .. and listen carefully ..
    Good shit happens !

    [Reply]

  • Zarina

    My personal experience with weightloss and exercise seems to support this. For years I would exercise on the treadmill for about 60mins a day. Weightloss if any during this period was slow and I was still watching what I ate carefully. Exactly one year a go I was diagnosed with severe endometriosis. At that time too I decided to change my diet to completely cut out gluten, dairy and sugar….I was in too much pain to exercise much at all during this time apart from my usual walking to shops and incidental exercise. I was surprised to find that quite easily I lost about 3 dress sizes purely with a change of diet and minimal exercise. This wasn’t my intent, I purely wanted to heal my endo….which I have successfully done too much to my surgeons surprise but the weightloss was also a lightbulb moment for me re over exercising my body. Today one year later i am still following my gluten, dairy and sugar free way of life as I definitely feel so much better this way. I have gone back to my treadmill but only to improve my fitness…anyone who asks me how I lost weight I tell them that from my experience it is definitely about what goes in your mouth that truly counts re weightloss and not a strenuous exercise routine.

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Five Alive Friday | Checks and Spots

  • Adrienne Vaughan

    Hi there, this is not a comment on the above post – i just couldn’t figure out another way to contact your site Sarah.

    I boughtthe i quit sugar cookbook yesterday on my ipad and it won’t download. It wasn’t till after i paid for it and was trying to find a way to make contact that i read there was a procudure for downloading. Given that I have already paid and tried to download it, can you please advise how i get my book.

    Thanks for your assistance.

    Adrienne

    [Reply]

  • ying

    I can believe it! When I was exercising regularly, I ate more than usual because I felt so incredibly hungry all the time! And it’s true that after exercising, some of the self-control was gone. I had to pass by Wendy’s after exercise and the smell of the french fries made my mouth water. Inevitably, I would go in and get a burger and fries. And I don’t even like french fries!

    [Reply]

  • brenda

    Perhaps it’s not so much about how much exercise you do, but that you’re actually doing the wrong type of exercise for fat loss – sure, nutrition is a key contributing factor – but to improve your metabolism for vitality and fat loss building lean muscle is the way to go (in addition to cutting refined sugars from your diet) – lean muscles is 66% of your daily metabolic requirement – it’s your fountain of youth and you immune system – so in addition to gentle exercise get some resistance training into your program for a long healthy life.

    :) Brenda

    [Reply]

  • Karen miller

    I wish there was a saltwater pool in Perth – is there? I adore swimming but feel uncomfortable re chlorine in most pools.

    [Reply]

    Sue Reply:

    I wish there was one in Melbourne too, Karen. I love swimming but the thought of that chlorine is just like NO WAY! :)

    [Reply]

    Sara Reply:

    St Kilda Sea Baths is seawater if that is convenient for you. Gorgeous gym too! Was my old gym before I moved out of town. It is a little pricey though.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.onlyglutenfreebaking.com Sally

    I couldn’t agree more with this. I lost 10 kilos after having two children without stepping foot in a gym or pounding the pavement. Switching from sitting at a desk all day to getting up and down throughout the day and cooking/walking/playing with my kids melted extra weight off without any “working out”. I know a lot of people who run or play sport very hard, not all them are thin and most of them pay astounding amounts of money to their physiotherapists.

    [Reply]

  • Josie

    Crikey!
    i really enjoy to read opposing ideas on exercise…..
    I am a hashimoto style chick! I have recently taken to walking /running forty mins a day.
    I love it!
    i hope that ten mins more than 30 mins is going to be ok?!
    Sarah, why do you do the big hot yoga classes? they seem to be in opposition to the thirty mins a day gentle exercise….and the bush runs too?
    Josie

    [Reply]

  • Christine

    I enjoyed the article. It never ceases to amaze me how different we all are as human beings and what works for one doesnt mean it will work for another. Therefore its important to hear that exercise doesnt work for everyone when it comes to weight loss.

    I need to lose weight and have also increased my exercise but each is different. I am losing weight by eating lots of veggies, I stopped eating processed foods (with occasional exceptions to be polite if out) and anything with added sugar. the exercise is for fitness and an overall feeling of wellbeing. I now run/walk with my dog instead of just walking. After battling an illness for several months (severe chest infection that wouldnt clear) it makes me feel great that I can now do this and i appreciate getting out there and feeling like I can beathe again , even if puffing along.

    [Reply]

  • Amy

    Thanks Sarah :) My mum has been telling me this for years!

    I used to have an expensive gym membership and go to the gym for heavy weight sessions 3 times a week (I ran to and from the gym as well). I’ve never had weight issues or exercised for weight loss. But since I haven’t gone to the gym I am lighter and leaner and spend waaaayyyyy less money on gym memberships and food!!
    I do other forms of exercise instead like yoga, bike riding and walking :)

    [Reply]

  • Stacey

    Hi Sarah,

    You are completely right. When I stopped eating sugar I hardly exercised and lost weight. Now I am eating sugar again and exercising more and I am putting on weight. So you are totally right!

    Anyway, on another topic, I listened to this fascinating interview yesterday on ABC Radio National and thought it would be something you would be interested in/talk about on here. It was about science/health journalists and how they ignore the scientific process and just take parts from studies that make interesting stories and publish them. The reason why there is so many contradicting health news messages out there! You can find the audio here: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/mediareport/health-reporting2c-research-journals-and-the-scientific-method/4529730

    x

    [Reply]

  • Anthony

    This is a good post Sarah
    I used to be a full-on Gym junkie until I went to Europe in 2012. After my return I just didn’t have the desire to go down that path again. Now I just hop on my little 50cc scooter and head for the pool, other than that I just walk. I have come to realise that walking is one of this simplest, healthy things that you can do to look after yourself

    [Reply]

  • Carmen

    I just had to comment on this.
    Firstly Sarah, thanks for a great post as always. I’ve had a whole year of searching for.. something, and gently gradually finding it from a whole range of sources but it all started with your blog. It led me to other blogs, ideas, lots of reading and thinking, and big changes in my life.
    Secondly I was really disappointed reading through a lot of the comments above. People being so unnecessarily aggressive and nasty with Sarah and each other, which really seems at odds with the spirit of what Sarah does here. Sarah your basic message (here, re exercise) seems to be ‘just do it’ (for lack of a better non-marketing phrase!) without going nuts and getting into habits that are counter-productive or causing yourself injury. Calorie in = calorie out, just plain wrong as you’ve covered before. What exercise you are doing, and what foods you are eating, as well as a host of personal factors, make a difference. Unfortunately a lot of people can consult Dr Google (or pubmed, if they want to feel very grown up) and find a ‘study’ to support just about anything. Doesn’t mean it’s right. Doesn’t mean it applies to everyone. Even apparent ‘consensus’ in the literature means nothing (the efforts of the Sugar Association to fund studies to contribute to the ‘uncertainty’ re the problems of sugar, for example). Also a lot of studies have questionable methodology, but the average person is not equipped to assess that for themselves. By all means, respectfully disagree or present your own experience, but the commenters above quoting conflicting studies seems mean-spirited and a bit pointless to me.

    [Reply]

  • http://rubadubdublog.wordpress.com Zoe

    Hi Sarah,

    If you aren’t utterly exhausted by the subject by now this is a really cool doco on some of the stuff you’re talking about. I saw it recently and I think it’s really great to keep up with all the new stuff coming out as I suspect you do too.

    Incase you are sitting down one evening with a cup of tea and looking for something to do! http://www.sbs.com.au/documentary/program/1087

    Have a lovely weekend. All the best.

    Zoe

    [Reply]

  • Antonio Garcia Jr.

    I love this article! I initially started to exercise because I was over weight as a kid, but since I’ve aged a bit, I exercise now because it clears my mind, especially while living in a hectic place such as NYC. I also exercise and eat healthy (quit sugar) because both my parents have type 2 diabetes, which is why I’m doing all that I can to avoid being another statistic of big pharmaceuticals.

    [Reply]

  • Anne

    If people don’t have anything nice to say they shouldn’t say anything at all. That’s what i believe.

    I think you’re fabulous Sarah and have your latest book, which i am still working my way through and enjoying reading.

    [Reply]

  • Tanya

    Hi Sarah,
    I thank you for sharing your honesty, experiences and personal thoughts. Having graves disease you find yourself constantly reading ‘scientific’ and medical papers on what/what not to do. I have had this disease for 5 years and have 3 other women in my family with it (including my mother). I find that the more I read and ask the medical profession the more I find solace & grounding in fellow suffers like you Sarah. i thank you for all the simple, easy and honest information you provide. Exercise is always a big contention for sufferers; having a rogue immune system and other symptoms such as heart palpitations makes it very difficult to exercise without destroying yourself for days or fainting in the moment! I have never been one to take anything that anyone says without doing my own research…(my friends find this a tad annoying at times!!)…I am always questioning my treatment with my endo. What you write in your blog is true to your experience and most appreciated as it is very hard to get this information from published texts! It is more valuable than many can appreciate. Of course when one reads anything, especially a personal blog they should take it for what it is. If you want medical advice, go elsewhere! So many of your experiences ring true for me! I was once an exercise machine…triathlete, swimmer, rower, runner, rider, tennis player and much much more (all in one week). I was stronger than most men. Now that I have this disease my life has had to change, including my commitment to sports. I now just walk…. I find it much more productive for my overall health and well being, for now. It is comforting to know that this also works for others too and helps to eliminate the guilt of ‘what once was’. DD it seems you have an unhealthy obsession with Sarah. This maybe is not a constructive place for you to be advertising this. You are adding angst to what is a relatively calming place of solace for sufferers like myself. Please go away!

    [Reply]

  • helen

    oh god how boring. just eat veges and good quality meat/fats and keep your body moving doing whatever. just like everyone did before the 80′s.

    Sarah, start blogging about bigger stuff before you lose me. I want to hear complicated thoughts for a complicated world.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.laurenraso.com Lauren

    Exercising when your body is not in a hormone balanced state will shorten your telomeres.
    Shorter telomeres = decrease longevity…..not good!

    Exercise actually needs to be managed with much more care and specific timing strategies than anyone out there will tell you…because they just don’t know! I deal with this stuff all the time with my patients. If your BMI is above 20 and you are doing more than walking, you are shortening you telomeres and your longevity, scary but true.

    [Reply]

    Tanya Reply:

    Hi Lauren,
    What do you do? I agree with you and it just reiterates that requirements are different for all bodies at different stages.:)

    [Reply]

    Lauren Reply:

    Absolutely Tanya! I am a Physiologist, Nutritionist, Wellbeing Specialist and Health Transformation Coach.

    [Reply]

    Tanya Reply:

    Where are you located Lauren?

    Lauren Reply:

    Melbourne, but I conduct all consults and programs via skype, so I can help whoever, wherever.

  • bernadette

    I have had hashimotos for almost 6 years. The first 5 years i never felt well until i started walking every day even if i felt “exhausted”, i have changed my diet to lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts, fish twice a week, meat once a week. I have to say that i have been feeling much better and my weight has stabilised. On bad days, i have a craving for caffeine so i would have just one cup of coffee and i dink a lot of water with a slice a lemon in it. I really enjoy your blog and by writing our experiences, we can only help others like us. Keep on the good work. I live in Cape Town but i hope to one day meet you in person as both my sons live in Sydney, Australia.

    [Reply]

  • Josie

    So great all of this and so helpful.I never get any actual replys when I write here but if I scroll through to read the other people with hashimotos its so helpful.I feel like I have it mildly in comparison and after years of resisting I have finally started taking low dose of thyroxine.I think my heart palpitations have lessened after three weeks on it…but Ill wait till Ive been through a whole month…..anyways .Thanks for all your wonderful posts and investigations Sarah.
    Josie

    [Reply]

  • jackie

    I totally agree, Sarah! The most weight I ever lost was when I wasn’t exercising at all for various reasons. I was surprised. Now, I just get out the door with my dog most days for about 20 minutes. She loves it, I love it, perfect! On the weekends, the whole family, including dog, will go to the lake, have a coffee at an outdoor cafe, then walk.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.balanceinyou.co.uk Jo

    For me personally, when I exercise with some intensity, everything is better. I’m huge on CrossFit and manage 4/5 sessions per week. It’s my ‘balancer’ in life. My appetite stabilises, my mood is brighter, my body fat % decreases, I move better, I’m more productive and it puts a pep in my step! My form of exercise is not for everybody. BUT, we all have to work out what is right for us. Which boils down to bio-individuality! What I do know is, that we need to MOVE, consistently and create routine around a form of movement you LOVE! When you LOVE IT, you’re less likely to quit!

    [Reply]

  • Dianna Love

    Awesome. Beautiful. True. Thank you!

    [Reply]

  • Trish

    This really resonates with me. Being big, I do like to exercise however if I really push it I end up injured or totally wiped out. Having social anxiety and agoraphobia add loads of challenge for me so I like the idea of making exercise more incidental, day-by-day and adapting it to how I’m feeling. If I’m having an off day I can incorporate it inside, if I’m feeling better then getting out into the sun will be helpful.
    So I’m going to make a big effort to devote an hour of the day to exercise and meditation, which hopefully with a diet adjustment, will help me to lead a healthier and happier lifestyle.
    Xx

    [Reply]

  • md kennedy

    I read an interesting book about a year ago that addresses the issue of amount of exercise nedded: The First 20 Minutes by Gretchen Reynolds. Agree with Sarah or not, you may find this enlightening.

    [Reply]

  • Emma

    I’m in the process of cutting back on my exercise routine. I normally would do 10-14hrs a week training. I would do 6 classes, PT session, and I ran 30-40 km a week. I started this in march last year and have put on 7kg :( I am always tired I can’t function at work properly anymore. I work 12 hr shift work in the hospital. I’ve developed fluid retention in my legs. I constantly have shin splints. I’ve started to feel depressed and I don’t get that exercise high anymore. I constantly crave sugar. I know I’m headed down the chronic fatigue path. So this week is the first week I’ve cut back. So hopefully I’ll feel more alive soon!
    Thanks for your post. Perfect timing!

    [Reply]

    Lauren Reply:

    Hi Emma, hun PM me if you would like to talk about what is going on for you xx

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Weekend Reading #35 – Birthday Edition! | Melbourne Maharani

  • Pingback: Musings from my sick bed | alifelivedlarge

  • Monique

    I loved this article, thank you Sarah for sharing your thoughts and learnings. I shed 8 kilos last year and have maintained the weight finally by eating really well and moving!! I stopped jogging and didn’t go back to my PT, instead I walk the block at work a couple of times a day, take stairs, do yoga and I keep busy at home…nothing too strenous…just a balanced life style…keeps me calm too….I could not agree more with your approach but had to learn the hard way, a lot less pressure on myself also which is the best part…please continue to share your insights….

    [Reply]

  • Stephanie

    I actually really agree with everything in this article, but I’ve come to it more through intuition than anything. When I was in my 20s I was a competitive marathon runner. As I was trying to win marathons, I was running 160km a week. I enjoyed it, and I don’t regret that part of my life, but now in my 40s I have an exercise routine similar to what you have at the moment. I walk everywhere, don’t own a car, do light, short workouts that I enjoy. Mostly, I just move. Today I’ll go ice skating for a half an hour, just because I love it. People are shocked that I don’t run anymore, and I certainly wouldn’t consider running marathons anymore. I am the same weight as I’ve always been, however, have plenty of energy, and apart from the fact that I am less sharply muscular than I was before, you really wouldn’t know that I’m no longer doing a great deal. Anyhow…great article!

    [Reply]

  • Sue

    I live near the ocean and see many people jogging. Most of them have fat around the middle. I just can’t understand how they can run and still carry fat? It goes to show that you can run as much as you like but if you put crap in your mouth will be never be trim.
    I will go as far as to say, that l believe that stenuouse exercise is very aging and bad for over all health and l don’t believe it reduces weight at all. Walking and light enjoyable exercise is so much better for you. I used to run every single day, and was heavier. As soon as l cut back l lost weight. Go figure. Eat when your hungry, drink when your thirstly and don’t forget to breath. It’s as simple as that.

    Sue

    [Reply]

    ian chapman Reply:

    Ummm, I also see joggers all the time – most of them don’t have fat around the middle… Strenuous exercise may indeed be bad for you personally Sue and even ageing – most of my friends are in their late forties / fifties, most train well and look at least 10 years younger than they are – I see a lot of people in that age bracket who clearly do not exercise and look 10 years OLDER than they are – go figure. Also I have seen many people lose weight from exercise (along with diet of course) – so yes it may not work for you – but I know for many others it does work, and that is what the point is I feel

    [Reply]

  • Eve

    Science shmience, different metabolisms, what works for one may not work for another. I love the idea of 30 minutes exercise a day and mixing it up as it is achievable and who wants to wear their joints out in middle age anyway. I am saving myself for the Masters……going to steamroller in my 70′s or 80′s I reckon…and I will get there by not wearing myself out now!! Am enjoying your book Sarah…

    [Reply]

  • Hannah

    You know, you can research until you’re blue in the face but there’s nothing like being your own little research study on what works for YOU. When I first came across Sarah’s book and the whole fructose thing I spent days and days researching the ideas, the science and alternate viewpoints and their scientific back up. In the end I was thoroughly muddled about what was true and what wasnt and how to tell if a study was solid or not. But I thought it sounded about right and after reading Sarah’s book, her gentle, experimental approach really appealed to me and made sense – why not give it a go? What did I have to lose? For things like this where there’s no harm in it and where you’ll either see the results or you wont, why not be the subject of the research yourself? So a year ago I stopped eating fructose (or mostly!) and I didnt need any further proof. Yes, I was addicted to fructose and yes it was contributing to all sorts of health complaints, I felt 100 times better off it and I have found that when I do have the urge and cook myself up something with a fructose subsitute, there are no cravings afterward. The science was in.

    If you’re wondering about the truth or not of what Sarah says here, and the science she backs it up with – TRY IT OUT! You’ll soon know whether its right for you or not. Clearly all the opposing science is right for THOSE people :-D

    Me, I’ve lost 14 kg off fructose, no exercise beyond incidental (of which there is a fair bit with 3 kids under 5 :o). I do need to get fitter, but it wont be through pushing myself, just through building it into my daily routine, walks, hikes, a Pilate class, rowing machine maybe (its there, may as well use it).

    Thanks Sarah!! Love your approach :o)

    [Reply]

    mw Reply:

    Well said .. !

    [Reply]

    Debra Reply:

    Really like Hannah’s comment! So true – to try it for yourself and see what works. We ARE all different, individuals, with diff sensitivities.

    Would love to know your blood type, Sarah, as I’m studying blood type diet, which says hard, prolonged exercise suits type O and gentle, relaxed exercise suits type A (not sure about B and AB – somewhere in btw probly).

    I am A and it’s so true for me that I’ve always wanted to, but never been able to, exercise hard. I get stressed trying to do a workout videos etc.

    Anyway, I see you have millions of responses to wade through here but would appreciate knowing your blood type, if you know it and you don’t mind.

    Loved the tenor of your article, very inspiring! And full of links to explore – great!

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Link Round-Up. | The Nerves Prick

  • Nardia

    Hi Sarah,

    Firstly congratulations on writing a piece knowing full well that it was going to create a bit of controversy! It takes courage to write against the norm. Whilst I completely understand where you are coming from on this piece Id also like to weigh in (excuse the pun) on the debate. I have been a personal trainer for over 15 years, and in my experience it is important to understand that there is time and a place for both hard high intensity exercise and some of the slower stuff, especially when it comes to fat loss. Exercise needs to be applied correctly in order to illicit the correct training response. As you mentioned calories in/calories out is a very over simplistic view of weight control, and in that sense training more to burn more calories can, and often will have a negative effect on body composition (and this is mainly die to the increased stress response). However carefully implemented high intensity training (whether this be interval or strength training), when combined with the correct lifestyle factors (such as lots of rest, quality nutrition, meditation etc..) WILL create a positive hormonal response that WILL create a favourable body composition.
    I just think that its important for everyone to understand that high intensity ex like everything else needs to be carefully implemented and monitored (and can exceed 20 mins worth). Its about creating the best hormonal environment for the body to get results (ie fat loss, strength gains etc..). Any good trainer will be able to get their clients to train hard to get positive results without making them sick or putting them into sympathetic over drive…

    Anyways, Ive said enough… again thank you for your thoughts :)

    Nardia

    [Reply]

    Hannah Reply:

    Thanks for your experiental wisdom Nardia, so valuable! I have heard, but not much looked into, that even short amounts (less than 20mins) of intense exercise combined with intervals of lower intensity has a dramatic effect – whats your experience?

    [Reply]

  • Kim

    Sarah, I love this. Thank you.

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Wellness roundup: the best of natural wellness this week : DelveSpot | wellness, wisdom + the search for radiance

  • http://themindfulfoodie.com Lesh@TheMindfulFoodie

    Interesting debate going on here.

    When it comes to food, honestly, I don’t care much for science. And this is coming from someone with pharmacy and medical science degrees. Just eat real, unprocessed foods — and listen to your body. What may work for others may not work for you and vice versa.

    I would say same goes for exercise. It depends what you enjoy doing and what works for you — it all depends on the reason why you’re doing it.

    For me, strenuous exercise doesn’t work – I had tried it for years. It has a different mindset altogether — what am I putting all this stress on my body for? To be super slim? Have a six pack? Because I certainly don’t need to exercise in this way to have a healthy body and mind.

    I’d rather do something regularly that I actually enjoy — and be conscious of making sure there’s incidental movement in my life — everyday.

    Thanks for the article Sarah, and for the opportunity to air my thoughts.
    Lesh x

    [Reply]

  • http://the-four-aces.blogspot.com.au/ Carole

    Thank you so much for posting this information up, Sarah! I’ve recently converted to a Paleo diet and was under the impression that I also needed to do Crosstraining and become an exercise buff. I’m glad to hear that my good old routine of daily walks, occasional sprints when I’m in the mood, and hauling around heavy object in my studio is quite enough. I like feeling fit and healthy, but to me, I’ve always had an aversion to compulsory “grunting” at a gym… It feels unnatural to me. Better to go bushwalking and enjoy some birdwatching. You get the benefit of exercise, relaxation and reconnecting with Momma Nature. Cheers! :)

    [Reply]

  • http://blog.isowhey.com.au ian chapman

    It’s good to see so many posts on this topic, rare to find on Australian blogs (usual on American ones, which, to my mind are not always that interesting!)
    Its also good to see a variety of opinions, too often on here its just people agreeing with what Sarah says and can be a tad dull to read (over and again i mean, not ALL of them:).
    Working in the Fitness industry there ARE studies for all points of view and for this reason one should not say or imply that one things will work for everyone (e.g “exercise just does not work” from one of the readers here – EVERYONE is different & will find exercising will have varied results. However – MOST people out there do not exercise and there has been a fairly constant stream of media putting people off doing so – I have read the ‘exercise makes you fat’ alot! – this is dangerous and is contributing to the huge obesity crisis we are having. People SHOULD exercise, for MANY reasons and these ‘sensationalist headlines do nothing to help anyone apart from making larger people feel less guilty. Do what feels right for you – but still do it!!

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: The Reading List #15 | Clare Herbert

  • Debra

    go checkout the blood type diet – and I don’t mean just read “reviews” of it on the internet – actually buy at least the first book on it and read it yourself to make up your own mind. It explains why some people DO benefit from hard physical exercise and some DON’T. I’m the type that doesn’t. Always wondered why I couldn’t jog more than 10-15 mins, got stressed trying to follow exercise video workouts at home, wondered what was wrong with me, but it fits exactly that my blood type suits gentle exercise like walking, yoga, anything I enjoy that’s stress free. Explains me totally. :o)
    (PS I’m slim and quite agile, and love variety of dancing, assault courses, etc, so my workouts can be quite vigorous at times, but with the stress-free in mind, I can do these things AT MY PACE, for a short while, and not attempt to do anyone else’s version of it.) :oD

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Carousel: It’s March, Baby! | FFBlogs

  • Biljana G

    Hi Sarah,

    I can relate to this article so much. I have tried as sorts of excursing and variety and keeping it simple is the best option. I hate wasting time going to the gym or traveling from a to b to get my daily exercise. I just want to step out the door or put on a DVD and go for it. In the last month I have discovered the TABATA workout and loving it. It’s high intensity training for 20 sec followed by 10 sec rest, repeating this 8 times. it takes les then 10 min to do a full workout, it’s so good for people with no time. I do it first thing in the morning and fill gear for the rest of the day. There are so many great exercise you can follow on You tube and there are great apps for the Tabata timer too. On of the best You tube videos to watch are genghisgirl. She is awesome. Hope this inspires a lot of you.

    [Reply]

    Debra Reply:

    Thanks so much, Biljana! Perfect for me. have devised my own routine using computer clock (for second hand) in my lounge but would be good to get new ideas, or follow someone on a video. Love the HIIT! (high intensity interval training)
    :)

    [Reply]

  • Kate

    Bless you for this. Truly. I’m so tired of being so tired of the constant war in my head and my body about exercise. How much, how often, what kind. It shouldn’t be a chore or an added stress. It should feel good. And gentle, mindful movement feels good. It’s nice to have the exterior reminder that my body is already telling me what it needs – I just need to quit fighting it.

    [Reply]

  • Simon

    Hi Sarah and Readers

    My name is Simon, 52 years old who has been and still is involved professionally in the health, fitness and Yoga industries in Sydney Australia for over thirty years. My whole exercise approach changed when around six years ago, I connected to my body more deeply than any of my prior Yoga or exercise experience had offered, through some hands on healing sessions. I trust that this rather long post will be worthwhile and thought provoking.

    As a Yoga, Pilates and fitness instructor, who enjoyed great popularity and by all standards was very fit, flexible and young looking for my age, what I felt through the healing sessions was quite shocking. I felt a hardness in my body – deep in the connective tissue and even around the organs. I felt a deep exhaustion and other feelings previously buried, such as sadness. I could have easily ‘blamed the messenger’, the healing sessions, as having done something bad to me, but knew in my heart that was ridiculous. I became aware that I was living, and teaching others, was a lie.

    After a period of about ten days away getting healing and asking lots of questions, I returned to Sydney and to my classes with a new awareness of my body. I could not teach what I taught before – My body wouldn’t let me. I had to slow movements right down and make them very gentle. Many classic Yoga and Pilates postures felt so horrible even when performed gently, that I just had to let them go. I understood that I was still in the process of healing, but I began to feel how most other people had trouble really connecting to their bodies and when they did, how exhausted they were and how much this new awareness was also ‘bringing up’ new feelings in their bodies -tightness, pain, agitation and emotions -and here we were priding ourselves how ‘aware’ we were and ‘accomplished’ in the physical mastery!.

    Since then, my teaching has reflected a life transformation into a totally new approach to health, fitness and wellbeing. To me true wellbeing has become about listening to and honouring my body, in all activity in everyday life. Here are some observations and opinions which will sound even more controversial than Sarah’s original post, yet hopefully resonate with some and inspire them to look deeper into themselves, where the answers truly lie:

    ~ My current level of wellbeing – consistent joy and lightness as I remember as a child, which I lost for many years. Gentleness and tenderness in almost everything I do. Greater efficiency, can work long hours and only get comfortably tired, never exhausted. Never angry, occasional bursts of frustration, never depressed or unmotivated.

    ~ My body does not like to run or even jog – except in the remote situation when there is a sense of immediate danger. I love to walk gently, sometimes vigorously but never labouring my breath. Occasionally I feel to do light weights or resistance training using my body as the weight. I am very strong when this is needed – I lift things from my whole body, not just from my forearms.

    ~ My body rejects excess sugar (including excess carbs, fruit), alcohol, caffeine, gluten and dairy outright. It is the feeling of raciness, agitation and tense muscles, or, heaviness, bloated-ness, which in either case creates a disconnection from my body that feels awful. This is not an outright allergic reaction, It is because I have become deeply sensitive and respectful of my body and I feel, with this awareness (the next level of Yoga, if you like), that there is a truth about quality and quantity of food for all human beings.

    ~ I now feel and understand the ‘exercise high’ to be a ‘disconnect’ or a numbing of awareness of our bodies. (endorphins = pain killers) which brings short term relief. It is a product of applying force on our bodies that requires a pain killer. This force can only be applied when we are disconnected to our bodies, exercising from mentally driven ideals and beliefs.*

    Consider an analogy of the body as a network of plumbing (which we kind of are), with too much pressure flowing through the pipes (which is not how we are meant to live). No matter how much you strengthen and reinforce the pipes and the joints or temporarily relieve the pressure, the plumbing is going to leak, break down and eventually fail, well before its use by date, unless a way is found to permanently reduce the pressure. Important conclusions can be drawn from this:-

    * 2 things the fitness and Yoga industries offers –

    1. relief through the exercise high and relaxation response – short term pressure relief whether the participant is fit or not.

    2. a training effect to fortify the body – for those not exhausted or busy enough to do regular sessions (about 15% of the population)

    * What the fitness and Yoga industries do not offer is a way to live more honestly and free of all the ideals and beliefs about needing a better body. Hence, Sarah’s original post is partly a very honest reaction to that and some other’s comments can be felt as very defensive replies, because of their investment in those industries.

    * Despite the fitness and Yoga industries being around now for almost half a decade, and gaining in popularity, the truth is that anxiousness and exhaustion are epidemic and illness and disease are still rising. For each person inspired by intense exercise and Yoga, at least 4 are put off. Something is very wrong and I am not referring to the many good people in those industries espousing quality of life. I am referring to the fact that the trend is towards stronger, more intense workouts. There is a consciousness at play here that needs to be exposed.

    ~ I have found through a sustained, felt connection to my body that the natural way of living is gentleness. It is natural when I put feeling before thought. Then my thoughts change. Then, I live who I am, as opposed to living the hardness and force necessary in trying to create who I am from what I do. It is incredible how much energy we put into not being ourselves, including how we exercise.

    ~ Wellbeing for me is more than not being sick, functioning well or specific parameters of strength, endurance etc. – this is what all science research of fitness is based on. It is about claiming our birthright of living in a body that is harmonious and joyful, no matter what we are doing.

    ~ Fitness for the New Era, will be a totally new paradigm. It will understand that our quality of being will determine our quality of doing. Then exercise will be a joy-full expression of all the choices we make about who we are and how we are living through honouring our bodies, as opposed to a way to seek identity through a ‘better’ body, mind, or life.

    [Reply]

    seeker Reply:

    I agree and am so happy to read your contribution here. don’t let it be the last!

    “Then exercise will be a joy-full expression of all the choices we make about who we are and how we are living through honouring our bodies, as opposed to a way to seek identity through a ‘better’ body, mind, or life.”

    ….. this makes so much sense and the more I practise Yoga (in it’s fuller meaning), the more this is true for me.

    [Reply]

  • http://blog.isowhey.com.au ian chapman

    An interesting post Simon, I too work in the Fitness and Yoga industries, and do not believe I am being defensive if I say that I have not had the experience you have. Most people will not have. I find it interesting that because something has worked for you, you appear to think it should work for all? This will never be the case as we are all so totally different, though I am really pleased that you HAVE found what works for you and some of your points make sense and may indeed work for many others, but not all.
    What may be a hard work out for one, will be easy for another, so how do you measure it? I am curious as to your health issues if you find even doing gentle yoga poses a strain? However I do think it is a good thing for lots of people to express what does work for them and others can see if that experience may resonate with them and be applicable to their own lifestyle, and if so that is good. The western world has a major problem with obesity, and I just do not believe that promoting headlines saying ‘exercise makes you fat’ is going to help – as clearly for many this is not the case.

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Ask Alfonso: Can Exercise Make You Fat? « Angry Trainer Fitness

  • Pingback: From Vienda, With Love - vienda m.

  • Emma

    Just looking back through some of your posts and I found this one on exercise. Thanks. Im about to embark on my 6th week of IQS (and feeling terrific as a result) and one thing I’m missing at the moment is good, constant exercise. But it is all about just moving I know how great I feel, elated even, after a brisk morning walk before work – needs to happen every day. Thanks for the prompt to get me back into it and just making it about living rather than ‘losing weight’ or ‘getting fit’.

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: My Eye-opening Interview with Sarah Wilson from 'I Quit Sugar' | Celebrity Diets

  • http://snipurl.com/2711rvp molesremoval

    WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for skin

    [Reply]

  • ZB

    Hi Sarah

    I could write a very long winded article to you to speak about how much my life and wellbeing has improved from your books articles – so I’ll try to keep it brief! As someone who has struggled with anxiety/depression for the majority of my life, I am grateful for your contribution to the health industry. From your books and blog, I have been able to manage my anxiety in a far better way with a clean and wholesome diet. I previously competed at a high level in sport, and have been trying to do shorter, kinder and more relaxing forms of exercise to stay healthy (it’s for the mind – not the body!) and was pleasantly surprised to see your take on this as well. I was distressed to see some people instantly attacking your views, and I really hope you shake them off and keep doing what you’re doing. (By the way, nothing more cowardly than internet abuse). Your clean, wholesome and calm approach to food and life works for me and inspires me every day.

    Cheers

    [Reply]

  • http://Joann1613.mywapblog.com/how-does-garcinia-cambogia-extract-work.xhtml what Garcinia Cambogia Extract do

    It’s remarkable in support of me to have a web page,
    which is good designed for my knowledge. thanks
    admin

    [Reply]

  • https://svpply.com/christinaschlunke diet plan reviews

    v3 weight loss cowt According tto their official website, Hydroxy
    - Cut contains Garcinia cambogia extract, chromium polynicotinate caplets and Gymnemasylvestreextract.
    A loot oof diet ppills contain caffeinee which causes sleeiness when the stimulating
    effect starts to wear out. When you ingest too much
    caffeine it ldads to heart palpitations. Using the retail price estimates provided by Glaxo – Smith – Kline, this
    translates into an investment oof approximately $75
    for each pound of fat lost, a hefty investment
    by any standard. Phentramin-d hit the market to replace
    Phentermine, but can it match Phentermine’s powerful weight loss and
    energy boost. v3 diet pills side effects

    [Reply]

  • Pingback: Last chance to sign up to the 8-Week Program | Sarah Wilson

  • Anna

    I have spent a lot of time reading the past conversation between David and Sarah. The only point that keeps popping in my head is this -it works for SARAH. She is not telling the world that her methods will work for everything like many weight loss and we’ll being gimmicks we have in this world. And trust me I’ve done them all being a formerly severely obese person. Or actually, don’t trust me… Trust yourself, your instincts and your body and find out what the research of yourself is saying. Sarah’s not pushing us to do anything that “works for sure”.

    Anna

    [Reply]

  • San

    Hi, I just found this article and I notice that I have cut down to some bearable and (in the long-term) steady exercise level. I have a question. I used to think that I need food within the first two hours after exercise, but now I am trying the no-snack approach from the IQS book. If I feel okay, is it okay if I, say, eat breakfast at 7, then go to Yoga from 9 to 10, then eat lunch between 12 and 1? How do you balance meals and workouts?

    [Reply]