There are a lot of fitness myths out there, and it can be hard to get started when you don't know what is true and what's not. I'm going dispel some of the more popular myths out there.
1. Early morning is the best time to exercise
While this may be true for some people, it might not be for you. Working out is a very personal thing, one person's right might not be right for you! There are many benefits to working out in the mornings, for example, it's better for weight loss because it kickstarts your metabolism for the day, and early bird exercisers are more likely to remain consistent with their workouts. This being said, there are just as many benefits to working out at night or in the afternoon! You are 20% more flexible later in the day and you might see improvement in your sleeping. I say find what works best for you. If you tend to get home from work and want nothing more than to plop on the couch and watch some Netflix, try morning workouts. If you're a busy parent in the mornings trying to get the kids and yourself out the door on time, maybe after work is best. It's all personal, just make sure you make the time, no matter when it is!
2. If I can't workout often enough and hard enough, I might as well not even do it.
Any amount of exercise is going to be beneficial to your health! Whether that's an hour long workout 6 days a week or five minutes while you're watching tv when you remember to do it. While it is better to be consistent and you will see more results, life isn't exactly always that way. The shorter the workout, the harder you will have to go, but a 5 minute high intensity workout should be doable for just about everyone , even if you need to modify some of the moves. The truth is, working out even inconsistently and for short bursts is better than not at all. Exercise releases endorphins making you happier, gives you a boost of energy, helps you sleep better at night and relieves stress.
Here's a quick 5 Minute Ab Attack to help you get started! There are many others on the Andrea Metcalf YouTube channel just like it!
3. I don’t really need to warm up when I am indoors.
Warming up is possibly the most important part of your work out. It protects you from injuring yourself while you work out! It's tough on your body if you go from zero to exercise without warning. Warming up does quite literally that, it warms your temperature, helping to loosen up muscles by increasing blood flow, which prevents injury. It doesn't matter where or when you are working out or what your workout is, a warm up is necessary.
4. One pound of muscle weighs more than one pound of fat.
This is one I hear all the time and while I think most people understand that a pound of anything is equal to a pound of something else, I thought I'd clear this one up. A pound of muscle = a pound of fat. That's fact, a pound is a pound. The difference is that a pound of muscle is more dense than a pound of fat. It takes up less space, that's why you can get smaller while not technically loosing any weight, because you are gaining muscle while shedding fat. The muscle will take up less space than fat making you smaller, but it does not weigh any more or less than fat.
5. If I exercise, I can eat whatever I want.
While technically this is true, as you can always eat whatever you want, if you're looking to get in shape and get healthier by working out you'll be sorely disappointed by the results if you don't take into account nutrition. Working out can make a huge difference in your life. You might become more energetic, happier, you might sleep better, you may become more motivated, and that's all great, but if you don't focus on the fuel you give your body, these results might be short lived. Your body functions off of what you put into it, all of the energy you use to exercise comes from what you eat. If you eat a bag of chips to get energy for your work out, you are probably not going to get as much out of that workout than if you ate something with more nutritional value. At the end of the day, nutrition and exercise go hand in hand. Sure, you can do one with out the other, but your results will be so much better if you focus on both at once. This video shows how you can eat healthy on just $20 a week!
Now that these myths are busted, I hope you can confidently become your healthiest self!