Going to the gym and working out means that you are also going to hear different opinions about exercise, diet, what works and what doesn’t. However, not everything you hear (and do) in the gym is beneficial to your physique and health. A lot of training and diet advice circulating around is often too old or just formed on the basis of incomplete information, but a lot of the gym goers are following it and even advice others.
So let’s distinguish fact from fiction and expose the most common gym myths:
1. Spot reduction ( or also known as “lose belly fat”, “lose arms fat”, “lose face fat” etc.)
Many people are doing hundreds of crunches, leg lifts, or bodypart specific exercises and hope that they’ll lose fat in those specific parts. Well, that is not what is going to happen. Gaining fat is the result of consuming more calories than you spend. Fat is stored globally not locally and when you exercise the fat “burns” (used as energy in lack of glycogen) everywhere in the body, not just the specific bodypart.
Furthermore, fat is unequally deployed throughout the body, depending on your genes, sex, age etc. For example, men tend to store more fat on their bellies, and the belly is the last place where fat will stay when trying to get rid of it. For women this problematic area are usually the thighs. It’s just how nature works.
What about the burn you feel in the part you exercise ? That’s just lactic acid build up. So the solution is to have a good balanced workout routine that will work the whole body – not just the part you want to slim down – and combine that routine with a specific weight loss diet.
2. More exercise – better results
While more work, more studying could mean better results in life and school, this is not how things go with exercise. More exercise does not necessarily mean better results. You body needs “down time” to recover from your workouts.
Intense exercise degrades muscle tissue and causes stress on central nervous system. It’s only when you rest that the body builds back up. So if you think you need to be in the gym 7 days a week to look good, than you must be doing something wrong, either with your routine or with your diet.
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3. If you are doing intense exercise, you don’t need to watch your diet.
“Exercise gets you one step forward, but a bad diet gets you two steps back”. During a regular workout you will burn around 700 – 1000 calories depending on how intense the workout is. Just as a comparison a burger and fries combo has around 1200 cals. Like we mentioned before, gaining fat is the result of consuming more calories than you spend on a daily basis, so you do the math here.
Some people assume that if you exercise you can even compensate for eating junk food, a ton of sugars daily, drink excess alcohol etc.
A well balanced and healthy diet plan should be the base of your healthy lifestyle pyramid as it underpins just about every aspect of your well being.
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