Getting into great shape is something that many of us commit to at one time or another. We want to feel a little more comfortable in our clothes, or we have sports and fitness goals that we want to reach, or we have a special occasion on the horizon and we simply want to look and feel our best.
Whatever your motivation might be, one of the biggest challenges that you’ll have when it comes to getting into great shape is busting a lot of the myths that are out there. They can set you off along entirely the wrong path, and totally knock your progress back if you’re not really careful.
So without any further ado, let’s take a look at the myths about getting into great shape, and the real truth behind all of them…
You have to completely cut out all treats and enjoyment
So many people get caught up in years and years of fad dieting simply because they have an all or nothing mentality. They’re on the wagon, or they’re off it. And the real problem here is that you end up restricting yourself far too much, and you feel deprived. And so you end up binge eating and telling yourself that you’ll start again on Monday morning. Sound familiar? I’ve learned that moderation is everything. I’ll still eat out regularly, and I’ll still choose a great wine in a restaurant. A bit of what you fancy can definitely do you good!
Women will get bulky if they lift weights
This is a myth that continues to be perpetuated, and I for one am sick and tired of it. Women simply don’t have the genetic make-up to naturally build a lot of muscle in a short period of time, so there’s absolutely no way that you’re going to get ‘bulky’ by lifting moderately heavy weights a few times a week. There are so many benefits of weight lifting, regardless of your agenda, and it’s the kind of exercise that I personally love the most.
You need to fork out for an expensive gym membership
Listen, I admit that I have a gym membership, and for me personally, it’s something that I’m just not willing to give up. I love checking out the classes, being part of the community, and having that extra accountability that goes hand in hand with paying a monthly fee. But if you don’t have the budget or you just don’t want to go to a gym, it’s not a deal breaker. There are plenty of exercises you can outdoors or in the comfort of your own home.
You can spot reduce fat in one area of your body
Most of us have those problem areas that we’d like to change. But you know when you see those articles that promise to reveal the 3 exercises that will blast your stomach fat for good? For the most part, they’re complete and utter nonsense. Your body chooses where it will burn fat from, and it’s largely out of your control. Want to delve a little deeper into the science? Check out this final attempt to kill the myth from Breaking Muscle. They know their stuff.
There are good foods and bad foods
Okay, so this one is perhaps a little trickier to tackle. If you want to lose weight, then it would be hard to argue that a salad wouldn’t be a better choice than a chocolate bar. But what’s really important to remember here is that food isn’t intrinsically bad or good. A balanced and sustainable diet is one that’s varied, and allows you to enjoy your favourite foods in moderation. Keep this in mind, and steer clear of labelling foods in this manner. It’s not a healthy mindset to have.
You can out-exercise bad eating habits
Regardless of how active you are, it doesn’t give you a licence to stuff your face. The simple truth is that you cannot outrun your folk, and what really matters when it comes to weight loss is what you put in your mouth. You should exercise because of the health benefits and because it can make you feel fantastic. But do know that you shouldn’t attempt to use it as a substitute for a healthy diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables.
Getting into great shape is something that’s possible for all of us. When you’re informed about what it really involves, it makes it so much more achievable. Which of these points did you find most interesting, and how might you tweak your approach from this point onwards?