With everyone claiming to be a fitness expert nowadays, it can be difficult to know who to listen to and what to believe. Fitness bloggers, Instagrammers, experts, magazines and even personal trainers all want to fill your brain with ‘fitness facts’ but how many are actually true? Unfortunately, in the age of misinformation, there are plenty of fitness myths out there. Here are the most prominent ones we should be aware of.
Strength training will bulk you up
Often, many of us (particularly women) are too frightened to pump iron in case they look like the next bodybuilder. So, plenty of gym-goers avoid strength training and just focus on cardio exercises instead. However, it’s a common myth that strength training is going to make you look like the next Arnie. In fact, it’s far more likely to make you a lean, mean machine instead of making you too bulky. This is especially the case for women who don’t have as much testosterone as men, so lifting weights isn’t going to bulk you up as much as it would a man.
Going 100% all the time
It’s a common misconception that every time we workout we have to give it our all to see the best results. However, if you’re hitting the gym too hard every day, then you could be doing yourself more harm than good. Many people think that if they’re not aching at the end of a workout then they haven’t achieved as much as they could. However, if you’re constantly in pain and pushing yourself too hard, then you’re not giving your muscles the time they need to rebuild. Instead, you’re going to end up getting an injury and potentially have to lay off the gym for some time. Mix the intensity of your workout routines, and you’ll get much more from them.
An hour workout is the best
Uhhh, wrong!! This is one of the worst myths because it also puts people off from exercising. Who has a spare hour to hit the gym? You can go through an incredible workout routine in 10-20 minutes which will be far more effective, as long as you know what you’re doing. Focus on high-intensity interval training, with something like Tabata, to see some incredible results in less than half the time. This type of exercise challenges your cardio system to the max, as it has to work harder to pump oxygen into your muscles. The more pressure you put on your system, the less time you need to workout to achieve some awesome results.
Cardio is the only way to lose weight
This is a myth that even some personal trainers will tell you, but it’s simply not true! Of course, spending an hour on a treadmill is going to help create a calorie deficit, but it isn’t the most effective way for you to lose weight. Instead, mixing up your regime with strength, HIIT and something less intense (like Yoga) will give you a full body workout that’s second to none. Don’t just pound the pavements, mix things up.
There are so many fitness myths out there that it’s important to realize you can’t always believe what you read. We hope we’ve busted some of the most common ones for you, but always do your research before you fall for the next fitness fad.