Author Topic: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?  (Read 694 times)

AlexthenotsoGreat

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Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« on: October 05, 2019, 11:07:29 AM »
I've quit going to the gym for about a month now, and something happened which I didn't expect. Rather than increasing my urges they actually decreased. This makes perfect sense in my opinion, at least if you're not having sex. When I went to the gym I'd usually have more energy in my body, but it also meant a lot of excess energy with nowhere to spend it. So I ended up going to porn most of the time when I didn't know how to get rid of all my energy. However, I'd be interested to know if there is anyone who actually goes to the gym regularly (3-6 days a week), under the age of 35, who is not having sex and has actually been off porn at minimum more than a month.

The reason I think this is important to ask oneself is because I've never heard of people who are unfit having a problem with immediate gratification, aside from a food addiction. It seems to me it would be easier to stay away from porn for one of two reasons: 1. you have a girlfriend/somewhere else to place your emotions or have sex with. 2. You aren't high strung on testosterone from going to the gym all the time.

Intuitively, it seems not exercising would be the easiest way to decrease urges, provided one has a fairly busy schedule.

AlexthenotsoGreat

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2019, 11:13:53 AM »
P.S. I am not suggesting this because I have a food addiction. But even if I did, I wouldn't consider eating a little unhealthy as bad as consuming porn every two weeks. There are lesser and greater degrees of addiction.

Numez

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2019, 01:43:37 PM »
exercise promotes more dopamine and endorphins so you will feel better, be stronger, healthier and have more energy. cardio training is maybe more important than weights. picking objects up and putting them down does not promote fitness and cardiovascular health as a good run, ride, swim, punching heavybag, burpees, running stairs, brisk walk, hiking etc. remember to warm up before, cool down and stretch after anything you do.

as far as cravings, you will have to deal with them sooner or later. its matter of changing your environment to suit you better in quitting and also doing activities such as exercise, meditation, rewiring, socializing, time in nature etc. to replace the dopamine loss during rebooting phase and rewire your brain.

DoneAtLast

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2019, 08:00:40 PM »
I can see how, psychologically, the door could swing both ways.  Moderate exercise should leave a person feeling less stressed, less anxious, and less impulsive.  Anyone who has owned a high-strung dog knows this.  I've had dogs that would be clingy, weird, misbehave, but get them a little bit of exercise, and they behave, are calm when you need them to be, and listen well.  That said, some people hit the gym really hard and I think it probably means they leave more wound up than when they went in; they might be hitting physical goals, but mentally and psychologically they aren't doing things just right.  I'm not well versed enough in gym activities to be more specific, but I do see some validity to what you're suggesting.

That said, sometimes cravings just go through their own weird cycles that are hard to bring back to anything we do.

AlexthenotsoGreat

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2019, 02:48:52 AM »
Quote
exercise promotes more dopamine and endorphins so you will feel better, be stronger, healthier and have more energy. cardio training is maybe more important than weights. picking objects up and putting them down does not promote fitness and cardiovascular health as a good run, ride, swim, punching heavybag, burpees, running stairs, brisk walk, hiking etc. remember to warm up before, cool down and stretch after anything you do.

I haven't thought about that before. Maybe I'm a person who needs to do longer exercise sessions. I used to run cross-country so it could be that my body is more "wired" to do that even though I've been going to the gym for the past few months. Sadly, the gym just hasn't done it for me. Although I feel a bit better mentally, my urges tend to increase. Possibly it's my own biochemistry that is making it harder, I can't say. The gym has separate sections for men and women, so I never feel triggered by beautiful women.

AlexthenotsoGreat

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2019, 02:56:20 AM »
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That said, some people hit the gym really hard and I think it probably means they leave more wound up than when they went in; they might be hitting physical goals, but mentally and psychologically they aren't doing things just right.  I'm not well versed enough in gym activities to be more specific, but I do see some validity to what you're suggesting.

That said, sometimes cravings just go through their own weird cycles that are hard to bring back to anything we do.

I think you hit the nail on the head here. Now that I think of it much of the time that I went to the gym I didn't really want to but did it because it's supposed to help with urges, and I ended up thinking that my success with staying off porn was directly related to my success in the gym. This lack of motivation also meant that a portion of my day was taken from the activities that I truly enjoy. I still believe it can help urges, but it really has to become an interest to be sustainable over three days a week and I don't see how that would necessarily be the case for most people.

hooked on monkey fonics

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Re: Does working out actually help with urges or the opposite?
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2019, 11:06:06 AM »
I've been going to the gym consistently for over 4 years. At first, the high of working out made it more likely for me to relapse - likely from the increased T and dopamine.

Nowadays there is no real correlation. I go 3-4x a week, every week, and it doesn't really have any effect (positive or negative) in handling urges. Over time I think your brain acclimates to the neurological effects of exercise (sort of like a drug) and simply maintains your mental health. I very rarely get an endorphin or dopamine high now.

I don't think having regular sex has much of a correlation either. On the one hand, you can argue that it rewires your brain towards sex instead of porn, which is great. But on the other hand it probably upregulates T and sex drive and can lead to the "chaser effect" which can increase the odds of relapsing.

Personally, I think the most important environmental controls are your diet, sleep, and drug use. Being hungover or heavily sleep deprived is a near guarantee to relapse, as well as excess coffee or pot use to some degree. But that's just my experience.
« Last Edit: October 08, 2019, 11:28:42 AM by hooked on monkey fonics »