Fitness Myths. There out there. From the scary to the silly to the just plain dumb…. I thought I’d reveal the TRUTH about some.
Lets get REAL with a few of personal favorite fitness myths…..
1.) “I want to loose weight… So I only exercise in the Fat Burning Zone”
My classes and clients will all agree that this myth is a huge personal pet peeve for me. “The Fat Burning Zone” lies between 50 and 70 percent of your maximum hear rate. When you exercise at this low intensity, your body draws energy from fat. As your heart rate goes up, more energy (calories) come from carbs. So I can see how it might seem “logical” that to loose fat you should keep your heart rate low. But thats NOT the case.
Working out at a higher intensity might cause you to burn a lower percentage of calories from fat in favor of carbs… but you still burn MORE total calories. And that is the REAL key to slimming down. Plus since you use more total calories, the absolute amount of fat burned actually increases too. In the end – it pays off to pick up the pace.
And yes, lower intensity exercise still has its place. Long slow sweat sessions build endurance and aerobic fitness. But to kick start your metabolism, you need intensity. Interval Training (workouts that combine intense efforts with recovery) are the best bet for maximum calorie burning effect.
Do some speedwork on your next run – or add some sprints into your spin session. Or come take Chisel’d with me at Equinox for cardio and strength intervals that are sure to surprise you 🙂
2.) “Eating at night causes weight gain”
Religious about not eating after 7pm? Many fitness folks believe that their metabolism slows later in the day – which is when we often overeat nutritionally void foods. But a calorie is a calorie no matter when you eat it. As long as you don’t take in more calories than you burn in a day YOU WONT GAIN WEIGHT. Overeating at 9pm is no worse than overeating at 9am – watch your overall intake, instead of the clock, and you’ll be fine.
Not sure how many calories your consuming or burning? My personal FAVORITE online food and fitness journal is the “Daily Plate” and is offered on Livestrong.com. This FREE service allows you to keep a detailed food and fitness diary, set weight/calorie goals, and provides you with detailed graphs of your progress over time. It’s easy to use and extremely helpful to see what’s going in and out of the body at all hours of the day 🙂
3.) “Weight Lifting will only BULK you up”
Oh Boy. I can’t even tell you how often I STILL hear this rumor floating through the locker room. Despite all the evidence – people still tend to blow off weight training for cardio – the “bigger calorie burner”. DISREGARD what you may have heard through the grapevine. If you want to loose weight… you need to lift it.
Strength training increases your endurance, stamina, and your body’s lean muscle mass. Muscle is MORE metabolically active then fat – therefore: increased muscle mass = more calories burned at work and at rest. And muscle is much denser than fat – so you’ll shave inches off your body and look leaner.
Whats your favorite fitness myth? How do you help someone get over it? “Spinning makes my legs big”? Oh boy…. don’t even get me started 😉