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Confused exerciser

Top 5 Fitness Myths

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There are so many myths about exercise and fitness that you could spend a full day reading about them and you may not even be able to get through all of them. I’m going to cover some of my favorite ones that I hear all the time from my clients.

1. If I exercise, I can eat whatever I want

“I worked out so I can eat whatever I want!” I have heard this in every gym that I have stepped foot in. Honestly, when I was in my teens and in my 20s I believed that if I was working out, I was able to eat whatever I wanted. I was wrong! In fitness things are always changing. New way of working out, a new class that will make you strong, or a new way to work out your chest and back. 

To be honest there are more things in fitness that change than stay the same. However, there is only one exception to this and that is that you cannot out train a bad diet! You will always be a product of what you put into your body. In order to achieve your fitness goals, you must change your lifestyle. There are many people who think that working out will make them healthier or make them lose fat and get in better shape. That’s actually only 15% to 20% of the battle. The other 80% to 85% is the nutrition portion. Without putting in the right fuel for your body, you will never be able to achieve a healthy lifestyle that you are already working so hard for. You will always need 100% of the pieces to complete the puzzle.

2. Lifting weights will make you bulk up!

By lifting heavy weights, you won’t get bulky at all. Some great things happen when you lift heavy. 1. You will be burning more calories because your body will be working harder to move the heavier weight. 2. You will be shaping your body or increase the definition of the muscles that you are working. 3. When you lift heavy weights you will be increasing the amount of muscle fiber recruitment, which means that you are increasing your strength of the muscle.

3. I can lose fat in my belly by doing Ab work.

Doing ab work is great because you are going to be making your core strong. However, your body will pull fat from wherever it wants to. Just because you do 100 sit-ups a day doesn’t mean that you are going to burn the fat in your belly. The best way to eliminate fat it by eating right, exercising and getting enough sleep. You cannot spot lose!

4. Lifting weights changes fat into muscle.

This myth isn’t as popular as it used to be but it’s one that I still hear my clients bring up during our training session. The best way I can put this is; You cannot turn an orange into an apple. Yes, the fat will go away, and the muscles will be more noticeable in the areas where you use to carry fat. Losing fat and adding muscle are two separate processes.

5. No pain, no gain.

I hear this one a lot. This myth is huge because people think that you are supposed to hurt or be in pain during and after exercising. First, I need to address the difference between discomfort and pain/hurt. In the exercise world discomfort is that burning, slightly achy feeling that you experience during and even a couple of days after exercising. Pain/ hurt is a strong, sharp and difficult to ignore that doesn’t get any better after short periods of time.

It is completely normal to experience discomfort and soreness after a good workout but if you feel pain during a workout that’s a bad thing. The exercise should be stopped at that point or you can risk further injuring to the area. This myth really comes into play when some people don’t realize the difference between discomfort and pain and will continues to “push through the pain” because they think it’s the only way to improve or gain the results they are looking for.

Learn more about Ochsner Fitness Center.


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