Getting advice about the right way to exercise and efficient workout routines from some randos on YouTube or, even worse — TikTok — is never a bright idea. There may be countless articles and videos on the Internet regarding this matter, your friends may have their own based opinions, and yet the only person you should listen to is either your doctor or a personal trainer — basically, someone who knows how your body works.
Here are some fitness myths everyone seems to believe to be true! Just remember to take these debunked myths with a grain of salt. This is the Internet, after all.
1. Everyone should workout
We must indeed be as active as we can during the day to reap the benefits of having a healthy body, even if it’s just doing some stretches after a nap. However, each of us is unique and has different body types and conditions. Thus, not all types of exercise are beneficial for everyone. A thirty-minute jog may be easy for your friend, but you will metaphorically die after the first 2 minutes. There’s a chance you may have heart problems that you don’t even know about, so overloading your system is a bad idea.
2. Intense workout burns fat
Some people do intense exercises to turn their “muffin tops” into tight and fit bodies without realizing that simple muscle contractions cannot remove the saggy skin in jest a few minutes. In order to get rid of a decent amount of fat in your body, you need to do it the hard way — by exercising regularly and dieting. Yes, proper nutrition is 90% of the success here.
3. Sweating burns calories
You’ve probably heard it somewhere that if you don’t sweat, you won’t burn any calories. That’s what sauna is for, right? In reality, experts debunked this myth a long time ago, as sweating only helps to prevent the body from overheating by cooling it down. In fact, there is no link between sweating and calorie loss.
4. Exercising turns fat into muscle
You’d think that your fat will burn faster, and you will get in good shape by jogging, but unfortunately, this is not enough. Cardio exercises will help you burn fat, while pushups, planks, and pull-ups will help you build muscle. Only by using this tandem will you get the desired result. If you have let yourself go, you will have to work very hard to get back in that saddle again.
5. Post-workout cupcakes are okay
Thinking that treating yourself with unhealthy snacks is okay, has to be one of the most popular myths out there. You essentially justify your bad eating habits because you can’t give them up. Of course, there’s no stopping you from eating what you want after the gym, but it’s bad for your health and makes it almost impossible to reach your fitness goals. A healthy diet and exercise go hand in hand. And exercising should not give you a free pass to eating junk food.
6. No pain — no gain
You’ve heard this one a lot, but it’s not true. The pain you’re feeling after working out is caused by microscopic tears in muscle tissue. In addition to microtrauma, your muscles secrete lactic acid when stressed. Is pain an indication of a good workout? Some people are convinced that the body should hurt all over, but the lack of discomfort is normal, especially if you’re a veteran fitnessholic. It is way worse if you are rolling out of the gym like you’ve just been pummeled by a gorilla.
7. Exercise makes back pain worse
It is not that important what you lift, as it is how much and how you do it. Of course, it would be stupid to try deadlift something that is not supposed to be lifted by a human, but if you’re doing it anyway, do it with your legs, not your back. We have developed that S-shaped spine for a good reason, you know? In fact, do not even try to pick something up from the floor if you are sitting on a chair, even if it’s just a pencil. You could snap your back like a twig!
8. Situps are the perfect weapon to fight belly fat
The dreadful belly fat strikes again. What do you do about it? Of course, the first exercise that comes to mind is doing 100 situps! However, these types of exercises do not burn fat, but they do strengthen the abdominal muscles.