If there's one thing the New Year brings, its resolutions!! Because exercise is included in almost everyone’s goal for the new year, I wanted to shed some light on 12 of the training myths that I hear from my clients that will hopefully help you achieve your fitness goals in 2019.
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12 FITNESS FIBS
1. CRUNCHES ARE THE BEST WAY TO STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE
Crunches are only designed to work the surface muscles and can put undue stress on your neck, abdominal wall, hip flexors and back. I recommend replacing crunches with pelvic tilts, hip rolls and clam shells. Each of these exercises is designed to safely and effectively strengthen your deep core, heal your abdominal separation and help you achieve that flat belly!
2. SUCKING YOUR BELLY INTO YOUR SPINE IS THE RIGHT WAY TO ENGAGE YOUR ABS
Not only is this method counterproductive for strengthening your abs, but sucking your belly to your spine can lead to pelvic floor dysfunction, back pain and poor posture. Instead, I recommend you connect lightly through your pelvic floor and think of lengthening while zipping upward through your body.
3. THE HARDER YOU WORKOUT, THE BETTER THE RESULTS
Just because your workout is intense, doesn't mean it's more effective. When you over-exercise and don’t give yourself enough time to recover, your body can become inflamed and more susceptible to injury. I recommend workouts that focus on core function and overall body alignment such as Pilates, yoga and walking. All of these options are just as effective and will leave you feeling sweaty, energized and ready to take on the day!
4. AFTER HAVING A BABY, IT'S NORMAL TO PEE A LITTLE WHEN YOU JUMP OR RUN
You DO NOT have to live with incontinence. By learning how to safely and effectively strengthen your deep core, you can eliminate your incontinence and resume all of your pre-baby activities without worry! For more on how to safely + effectively strengthen your deep core, check out my Core Rehab Program.
5. YOU HAVE TO STRETCH BEFORE A WORKOUT TO AVOID INJURY
Many people think you have to stretch until you feel that “good hurt” to really stretch your muscles. Overstretching can actually cause your muscles to recoil leaving you worse off than you were before. I recommend active stretching because as you stretch you stay lightly connected and are able to control your stretching while increasing the stability throughout your entire body.
6. NO PAIN, NO GAIN
The idea that you should feel “the burn” or “hurt” after a workout is far from true. You should feel like you did something but nothing should ever hurt. If you push yourself too hard, too fast, you can actually cause damage to your body. I recommend slowly working your way up to more intense workouts and always to listening to your body!
7. KEEP ROLLING OUT YOUR IT BAND
The spot of the pain is not usually the source of the pain. When you feel pain in your IT bands, it's almost always your quads or hips that are the source of the pain. I always recommend rolling out your quads first and working your way up to your hips. This will usually help loosen up your IT band and provide you with the muscle relief you are looking for.
8. LIFTING WEIGHTS WILL CAUSE YOU TO BULK UP
Women are especially afraid of “bulking up” if they lift weights. We do not have the hormones to “bulk up” as men do. The women you see that have a substantial amount of muscle mass are most likely taking some additional supplementation. I recommend starting out with a light pair of weights or simply using your body weight. Any resistance training is great for the body especially as we age because our muscles help keep us strong and protect our bones.
9. I HAVE TO RUN TO STAY FIT
There are a ton of workouts that will provide you with an all-body workout without the high impact grind of running. I always recommend walking, Pilates and yoga. All of these options will work your entire body, especially your core and leave you feeling energized, stronger and ready to take on the day!
10. EXERCISING ON AN EMPTY STOMACH WILL BURN MORE FAT
Everyone’s bodies are different so how your body burns fat depends on a variety of factors. Those factors include the time of day you workout, the intensity of your workout as well as the length of your workout. If you experience any shaking, fatigue or light-headedness, this is a good indicator that your body is depleted and your insulin and adrenal levels could be low.
11. TRAINING FOR A MARATHON WILL GET YOU IN THE BEST SHAPE OF YOUR LIFE
I am all for pushing your body and wanting to check that marathon off of your bucket list. That being said, limiting yourself to only endurance training will take a toll on your body and is not the best way to prepare for the big race. Studies have shown that the best way to increase your VO2 is with interval training. I challenge you to swap out two of your endurance workouts with interval pieces of training. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at the results!
12. THERE ARE EXERCISES THAT CAN TONE UP A SPECIFIC AREA OF YOUR BODY
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but your body functions as one. While you may lose weight from certain places on your body first or last, there is no miracle exercise or technique that can target one specific area. The best course of action is to make eating healthy and staying active part of your lifestyle. You will not only feel better physically, but you will also increase the quality of your life for years to come!
The material contained within is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. You should seek prompt medical care for any specific health issues and consult your physician before beginning a new regiment or purchasing any product(s).