Food and exercise are NOT a transactional relationship

Food and exercise are NOT a transactional relationship. ⁠

I used to think that if I ran X number of miles, I “earned” a couple of glasses of wine or pasta for dinner because I burned a certain number of calories. ⁠⠀

I also thought donuts could only be eaten on the weekend because I was having a “cheat” day. ⁠⠀

And just because I went out to brunch with friends on Sunday, it meant that I had to skip an impromptu happy hour on Monday. ⁠

What I’ve learned over the years, however, is that food is fuel and nourishment. Food is also fun, delicious, and full of all the GOOD things in life. It’s meant to be ENJOYED and it’s okay (more than okay, actually) if you LOVE what you eat ALL the time! ⁠

And your activity level does NOT directly correlate to the type of foods you can enjoy. No food is morally better than another, Monday is as good a day to treat yourself as Friday, and you don’t need to burn 500 calories to “earn” 500 calories.

The end.⁠⠀


  1. What would you suggest to a person who is stuck in that cycle of thinking? Feeling guilty for eating certain foods and then pushing themselves to eat less and/or workout that much harder the next day to “make up” for it or “earn” the right to eat again?

    1. I’d take the time to think through these feelings and how they make you feel beyond the initial discomfort. Journaling and writing down these emotions might help you unravel what’s driving these thoughts and habits. You might also want to talk to a therapist or other professional. Good luck! It’s not always easy, but it’s worth it!

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