As a personal trainer, I’ve heard a lot of crazy theories that people come up with to satisfy their own workout goals. If I had a nickel for every time I’ve had to change some one’s views in an introductory session to personal training, I would have exactly $2.45. So I’d thought I’d use that $2.45 on hydro to expose some fitness and workout myths. These are the top four workout myths that I think are the most prevalent.
Myth No. 1: Working on strictly abdominal exercises gets rid of belly fat.
Many infomercials on late-night TV peddle exercise products that claim to “tighten up the tummy and get rid of that dreadful belly fat.” The fact is, working on one specific part of your body will strengthen and develop that area, but it won’t do much to get rid of the body fat. Everybody is different when it comes to where their body stores fat. Some people store it in their belly, others store it on their calves, arms and/or hips.
So what’s the best way to get rid of unwanted fat in these trouble spots? The answer is proper aerobic exercise, weight training and diet. These three factors all lower the general body fat percentage of the body. Also try ab exercises that have twisting motions. This will break up the fatty deposits that are trapped in the belly and spread them out over the body. It won’t get rid of the fat, but appropriate portions of cardio, weight training and a balanced diet will get rid of it.
Myth No. 2: No pain, no gain.
Although some people might enjoy the sensation of pain when working out, they are putting themselves at risk. Pain is a sign that you should immediately stop before you injure yourself. Cold clammy hands, a hot, burning sensation and sharp pains are all signs you should stop the exercise. You must listen to your body; working through the pain is only putting yourself in more danger.
Myth No. 3: You’re only working hard enough if you’re sweating profusely.
Sweating is the body’s way of cooling itself to prevent overheating. It is a natural body function. It’s the same as genetics; everybody sweats differently. Like myself, some people sweat more than others even though they’re in shape. So sweating is not exactly an indicator of how hard you are working. Don’t worry, you’re still burning a large amount of calories just like everybody else.
Myth No. 4: Weight machines are safest to use because they are simple and are easy to use.
I agree with half of this myth. Yes, weight machines are simple and easy to use, but if you use them the wrong way, they can be quite damaging. If you don’t know how to adjust the seat or handles on weight machines, it can put excess stress on the back, joints and ligaments. So if you’re not sure on how to use the machines, check the instructions written on the machine itself or ask a professional. Trust me, it’ll be worth it.