Why do I gain weight when I exercise?

There are a handful of potential reasons that can explain why you are gaining weight now that you exercise.

Here are some possible explanations of why this is happening:

  • You may be gaining muscle. If you increase your activity levels or the intensity of the exercise you are already doing, you will probably stimulate muscle growth to occur. This is especially the case when your exercise program includes lifting weights. In this instance, it is actually a good thing that you are gaining weight as a result of exercising, however, this makes it trickier to track your progress. If you think you are gaining muscle and losing fat because of keto and exercise, it is best to track your progress with your weight and your waist circumference measurements. Some of you may find that your weight increases a bit, despite the fact that you lost an inch or two off of your waist. Although you didn’t technically lose weight, this means that you lost fat and gained muscle — the best of both worlds!
  • You may be exercising too much. If you are exercising for longer than an hour every day or pushing your body beyond its limits without adequate recovery, your body may adapt by decreasing your thyroid hormone production and burning fewer calories throughout the day than before. This may turn what you think is a calorie deficit into a calorie excess that leads to weight gain. The solution to this issue is either to decrease the volume or the intensity of your workouts until you feel energized throughout the day and start losing weight again.
  • Exercise may be making you eat more. The research isn’t clear on this subject, but exercise has been shown have an appetite-stimulating effect in some people. This can subconsciously cause you to eat more food without realizing it on the days that you are exercising. The best way to keep this from happening is by aiming for the macros that you get from our keto calculator and tracking your calories.
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