It’s the new year, new decade and the time of year we start to set new health and fitness goals. This is the perfect time to debunk a few common fitness myths so that you can start your year strong and focus on the right path for the results you want to achieve.
You’ve most likely heard and read these myths amongst friends and social media posts – the reality is that many of these stories and idle chit chat are just stories, and learning to navigate through these tell tale myths is important so that you keep your fitness goals in mind without being distracted with supposed ‘facts’.
1. No Pain, No Gain
You do not, and I repeat, you do not need to be in pain in order to achieve the fitness results you desire. There is a difference between doing exercise you have never done before which your body will find uncomfortable compared to being in absolute physical pain where your body is pushed to limits that are deemed unnecessary. To be fit you can move your body in many ways, and that does not require punishing your body to extremes that make you hate exercise. Pushing yourself to harm will only cause mental and/or physical issues.
2. Running is the Best Form of Cardio
Running is an excellent form of cardio exercise, but it is not the only way to have a good cardio workout. Other options include walking, swimming, cycling, dancing, moving weights fast, interval training, bodyweight workouts, skipping, boxing, martial arts, skiing, rollerblading, rowing, playing sports such as football, rugby, hockey and basketball. As you can see there are many options and it is not limited to this list. Have fun with cardio and make it work for you, whether that includes running or something else!
3. You Must Workout Every Single Day
The term ‘workout’ generally refers to doing a fitness programme or training plan. You do not need to do a workout every single day in order to be fit. You can move your body every day in various ways and mix it up between following a fitness plan and going for a walk. You can also choose to have a couple of days a week where you don’t intentionally do a form of exercise and enjoy other things in your life and still be fit and healthy. The important thing is to look at the bigger picture and note your consistency weekly and monthly of moving your body with exercise.
4. High Intensity is the Best Way to Lose Fat
There are many ways to lose body fat, but doing high intensity workouts is not the only and best way to do so. Yes, doing HIIT is a great way to get fit and lose body fat. However, any type of exercise that you do consistently over time is going to help you. If you love to run and find that easy to implement regularly then that will help you to lose body fat. If you dread HIIT and always feel stressed over doing it, then you won’t do it for the long term which will effect your fitness goals. Also, remember nutrition has a huge pay to play in your body shape. What you eat is a big factor in losing body fat.
5. Sweating a Ton Means You Worked Your Best
Sweat can be a physical sign of working to a certain level of intensity, however it is not the only way of showing you worked to your best in a workout. Some people don’t sweat as much as others, simply due to their current health status, genetics and overall individual body. Personally, I don’t sweat much compared to others when doing high intensity workouts but if you check my heart rate it is super high and I am certainly out of breath. We are all individual human beings. Focus more on your heart rate to gauge your workout’s level of intensity.
The (healthy) takeaway points from the above is move your body in a way that makes you feel good, supports your goals and helps you commit for the long term. Ignore the gossip and focus on your beautiful body.