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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Fitness Myths Debunked

There are sooooo many myths out there about health and fitness.  Unfortunately, some people believe everything they read and it can be scary what is written!

I've had people critique the way I treat my body because of myths they've heard.
I've had friends do crazy things in the name of weight loss due to myths they've believed.

The best advice I can give when it comes to health, fitness, and nutrition is...

Do your homework, people.  Research.  Research.  Research.

And make sure those places you're getting your information from are credible before believing everything you read.  Before signing up with Beachbody, I made sure to get down into the nitty gritty; I wanted to make sure I truly believed in the company, it's mission, and the products before deciding it was something I would use and endorse.

Know what you are putting in your body before you put it in.  Know what you are doing and how to do it properly before you start.  This will results in less injury and better results.

Myth #1:
The more you sweat, the more calories you burn.

Nope.  Not true unfortunately.  In fact, if you work out more than you should, you will start to burn less calories.  You heard that right...less.  See, your body needs a certain amount of calories to function.  If you are burning more than that, it is going to cling to any calorie you feed it meaning you will burn less calories and lose less weight when you exercise.  In some cases, you could even gain weight.

Myth #2:
Heavier weights get you cut.

I have always thought this was true, but it's not about the weight.  It's about the reps.  In fact, a lot of women choose not to go any higher than 5 pounders so that they don't bulk up.  They just do more reps to get cut.

Myth #3:
Cardio is the quickest way to lose weight.

I am a long time believer of this myth and only recently have learned (and experienced) otherwise.  In fact, several of my challengers were doing their workouts without weights and experienced 0 weight loss until they started incorporating them.  Cardio is definitely a fast and productive way to lose weight, but if you don't incorporate strength training you will hit a plateau that  no amount of cardio can overcome.  Switching things up with cardio, weights, plyo, etc. is the quickest way to lose weight.

Myth #4:
Machines are better than free weights.

I love the gym just as much as the next gym-rat, but it's not in the cards for me right now.  And honestly, since starting with Beachbody, I will probably never own a gym membership again.  I really like my at-home workouts.  I used to think a good workout consisted of 20 minutes of cardio followed by either arms or legs on the machines.  And that is a decent workout, but free weights are actually a little better.

Before you argue me, hear me out:

When you are using free weights, more than just the muscles you are exercising are engaged during the move.  For example, you have to use leg muscles to hold your stance, core muscles to still your body during the movement, etc.  When you are sitting on a machine, the machine is stabilizing you.  When you are using free weights, your muscles must work to stabilize you.


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