Getting The Right Information Is Critical.
It was a normal day... I got up, made some tea and checked my blogs Twitter account.
I skimmed my feed until I saw it. It was there like a beacon of misinformation staring right at me with an agenda. An agenda to halt this Tweeters fat loss progress for a better body.
The Tweet itself went a bit like this;
"Why haven't crunches helped me lose more fat? Should I do more?"
So I replied and said in essence - "Hi _____, No you shouldn't be doing them at all! Spot reduction is a myth!"
We had a lengthy conversation after this and by dropping the crunches out of their routine it didn't hurt their weight loss goals at all.
So today I'll be dispelling five of these myths!
- Spot Reduction - exercising a particular area doesn't help you lose fat any faster! The body has certain areas where it stores fat in a sequence. Think of it like this. First one in, last one out. As an example we lose fat from the face very easily but not so easily from the midsection! Be patient and it will happen!
- Eating Fat Will Make You Fat - This is a remnant of the bad nutrition advice of the 1980s. Fat is crucial for a number of functions and not to mention it stimulates your hormones including HGH (Human Growth Hormone) which is reponsible for a number of things but increased burning of adipose tissue (fat) is one of them!
- Cardiovascular Exercise Is For Fat Loss - Cardio is actually for the heart. We perform this at around 80-85% of our heart rate, which is just too high intensity for the goal of losing weight. At this intensity for extended periods you're just as likely to lose muscle as fat. Ideally you should be performing exercise at around 60-65%. Most machines in the gym will have a chart to show you what that is for your age. However another way to tell is if you have enough breath to talk while running or cycling you're probably hitting the sweet spot!
- You Have To Eat Regularly To Lose Weight - While eating regularly can help you achieve your goals, just as any eating plan can the truth is it's all about calories in versus calories out. If you are busy you can lose weight eating just one meal a day as long as you get all of the calories in. One of the benefits to eating regularly is it keeps the metabolism high. Having a high metabolism is useful if you aren't a strict dieter. The reason for this is someone with a lower metabolism will put on fat much easier than someone with a high metabolism. However if you are strict and too busy to eat 5+ meals then you can do it with 1-3.
- Weight Training Doesn't Help With Burning Fat - Unlike steady-state exercise in the 60-65% range, weight training has one ability that trumps it. It can continue to burn calories for up to 3 hours after you stop exercising! This is a huge advantage to anyone looking to lose some extra pounds who can't get to the gym very often! Also muscle is a lot more calorie expensive. This means you burn more calories the more muscle there is in your body! It's an all round win win situation.
So there you have it! The five myths that have been holding your progress back!