We hear about the best this or best that exercise or diet to keep healthy and fit all the time. Since I enjoy being different, let’s look at some of the worst how to keep fit advice out there.
Weightlifting adds bulk
The top of the list is to avoid weightlifting if you don’t want to look bulky. What? At my age, weight lifting is the most recommended form of exercise.
Weight lifting increases strength, protects your bones, and benefits your balance, coordination, and posture. It’s linked to better cardiovascular health, improved chronic disease management, and mood-boosting.
You don’t want to avoid exercise, that’s good for you for fear of looking like “The Rock.” My partner and I aren’t bulky. We’re fit, some say buff, that’s a good thing.
Believe your scale
The numbers on your scale measure your fitness progress. Getting fitter means building muscle, and your weight isn’t a good measure of that. Your mirror will help measure your progress.
No pain, no gain
This saying is an oldie but goodie, no pain, no gain. It’s false. Pain may cause you to skip workouts, which sends you in the wrong direction. The exercises you enjoy and complete regularly help you reach your fitness goal fastest.
You need a gym membership. COVID-19 proved you don’t need to go to the gym. A personal trainer and a fitness app, or just an app, work fine. I’ve had no problem keeping in shape at home. I like not hauling myself to the gym three times a week. More time for other stuff I enjoy.
Exercise to lose weight
Exercise is the only way to lose weight. No, exercise helps you lose weight by burning more calories. The key to losing weight is dieting or restricting calories.
Lots and lots of carbs
Lots of carbs before a workout are necessary. No, unless you’re running several miles or sweating it out for over an hour. Otherwise, eat your usual healthy foods.
Hit it every day
Work out intensely every day. Really? Your body needs time to rest and heal. You will reach your fitness goal sooner with a day or two between workouts. Your body can’t build muscle if it’s continually repairing it.
Cardio is better than weight training. That’s not true for my age group. Our trainer has us do a bit of cardio, but he emphasizes the weights.
While cardio strengthens your heart and keeps your weight in check, weight training boosts overall strength and tones your body. Our trainer is correct. Both are essential parts of a good fitness regimen.
Exercise on empty
It would be best if you exercised on an empty stomach—poor advice. I tire quicker if I workout on an empty stomach. The cause is plummeting blood sugar, which can lead to dizziness or fainting.
A certain number of reps
Do a certain number of reps to achieve more muscle and more repetitions to improve endurance. Science proves this wrong. It’s not the number of repetitions but your age, sex, activity level, and many other components.
Static stretch beforehand
Static stretching is a must before a workout. We’ve all heard that one. It turns out it’s untrue.
It may cause injuries during exercises. Science now tells us dynamic stretching or light cardio works best as a warmup.
Squats destroy knees
Squats are bad for your knees. They are if you do them wrong. When I began doing squats, I did them wrong, and my knees hurt.
I’m careful to stay on my heels while squatting. Your knee remains behind your toes that way. I’ve no knee pain if I squat correctly.
Twelve fitness claims debunked. And many reasons to tweak your fitness routine to avoid injury and increase your enjoyment. Getting fit should be fun.