Halloween is approaching, which marks the arrival of some funny and some really scary ideas and that’s why it’s Halloween. When I think about Halloween, I get scared when I imagine scary people with a ghostly appearance – nevertheless, Halloween is a fun festival and we shall enjoy it to the fullest.
In this Halloween season, I would like to kick off some fitness related ghosts that are really scary! Let’s talk about some fitness myths which need to be scared away by us.
Fitness Myth 1: Only fresh fruit and vegetables should be consumed, and not frozen
Fresh fruit and vegetables are always great but do you really think they are “fresh”? A fruit after being plucked from the tree takes some time to reach to your local supermarket. It might be even 7 days old. So unless you get it from a local farm where it is harvested daily, you can’t guarantee freshness.
Frozen fruit and vegetables, on the other hand, are plucked and instantly frozen and stay frozen until you buy. They might not be as good as fresh farm fruits but can be considered as an option. Make sure that they don’t have added sugar.
Fitness Myth 2: Going for a hot bath post-workout session is great
Actually, no, It’s better to let the body get an ice pack treatment with a cold water shower.After a workout , blood vessels get widened and waste product including lactic acid get settled in the muscles .Cold water contracts blood vessels and decreases the chances of waste settlement.
However, it’s necessary to bring the body back to the normal temperature after a workout. So a shower should be taken after 30 minutes of cool down.
Fitness Myth 3: Swimming will help me lose weight
Swimming is a very good exercise and does burn calories but a 20 minute session might not be helpful in reducing weight. Swimming is effective when performed for a longer time, like for an hour. One hour of fast swimming burns around 600 calories.
Fitness Myth 4: Do cardio before your workout
There are different theories regarding this. Doing cardio first would deplete glycogen levels and the body gets tired. As the glycogen levels get depleted, your lifting session would suffer and you won’t be able to lift as heavy as you could.
Fitness Myth 5: Doing cardio daily for 1 hour will reduce fat
This is the biggest myth. I see people spending hours on the treadmill with a hope to lose their fat, though this are not to be done. Plan your cardio 2-3 times a week, preferably HIIT. A 20 minute HIIT session can burn more fat.
Fitness Myth 6: Static stretching before workout is must
Again, there are different theories for this. Research has shown that static stretching post workout is great but before a workout it does not do anything extra except tiring the muscle group. My advice is to do one warmup set with very light weight for the particular muscle before the workout. Moreover dynamic stretching can be done too.
Fitness Myth 7: I am a woman. Lifting dumbbells will make me bulky
Most women don’t lift weights as they live with the fear that they would grow big like men! Let me tell you that females can’t put up muscles like men as they lack in the muscle building hormone called testosterone.
Fitness Myth 8: Doing countless sit-ups and crunches will give me a 6 pack
So many times I have seen people doing countless sit-ups. Abs are made in the kitchen and usually belly fat is the last one to leave your body. Doing countless crunches gives you back ache and doesn’t do anything special – it just builds muscle underneath the fat. A well planned diet and training abs like other muscles is a good way to reach the goal.
Fitness Myth 9: Exercising early morning on empty stomach is a great fat burning deal
There is no universal time to train but I have never been through any training program that requires you to train on empty stomach. During a workout, you need glycogen to fuel your muscles. Doing a workout on an empty stomach opens up to more injuries and concentration loss, moreover the poundage of weights decreases like anything. If you are a morning gym goer, do have a carb source to fuel your workouts.
Fitness Myth 10: Training twice daily brings great results
It’s not always true. Training twice is good for competitive bodybuilders as they have ample rest and their nutrition is optimized. Training twice a day without proper guidance and diet is a big no! The muscles also need recovery and there should be at least 72 hours of rest between each muscle group.