Born to run?

It didn't take me long after falling down the eating disorder rabbit hole to realize that one's desire to eat and ability to stop eating are not as obvious as they seem. It used to seem simple that eating was a conscious choice and pushing away from the table a thought process as well.

I was wrong. It is much more complex and a lot of things can go wrong with the complicated systems behind hunger, seeking food, satiety, and self-regulation.

Not long after I 'got' this, I realized that there was probably a pretty complex set of less than conscious mechanisms involved with physical activity. I've blogged about it before and I think we may want to look at the drive to exercise as far less about choice than we've assumed. People who fall on the far ranges of this - unable to find the drive and those with too much of it - may need more than chiding and deriding: they may need treatment. It isn't healthy to remain too sedentary nor is it healthy to go beyond one's needs for physical challenge.

More fuel for that fire: Do our Genes affect our desire to exercise?


  1. Right on. I read a study (can't remember from where...) on newborn infants. They had little straps on their limbs to record how active they were. The study also recorded how much they ate and weighed.
    The leanest babies moved the most and ate the most, the largest babies moved the least and ate the least. No cultural forces at this point... I also hear moms all the time talk about in utero, the huge differences in activity and how this often stays true once the child is born (totally unscientific!)
    I like the very old fashioned notion of endomorph, mesomorph and ectomorph. I am a meso, (I like exercise, but don't NEED it) my father is an ecto (slim and needs aerobic activity at least an hour a day to feel right) and my Hubby who is an endomorph. (Happy to sit and read all day...) Just a fun thought, but can be useful to think of different types of energy needs. This would have interesting implication with ED and a host of other factors.
    Satter talks about the Division of Responsibility with activity as well. Parents provide opportunities for kids to be active, but shouldn't push... I could go on, but won't! :)

  2. Thank you again. Sorry my last comment on your most recent blog was so long but i find myself feeling great comfort as i have been reading some of your most recent blogs and i needed to thank you.

  3. I'm honored - by both of you - for reading and commenting. NEVER apologize for "going on" - that's what we're all here for, right??


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