5 Fitness Myths Any Woman Should Know
Crunches and sit-ups are the key to shredded abs. Lifting weights makes women bulky. You can spot reduce fat. Men and women should train differently. These are just a few of the many female training myths that refuse to die. Opinions on women and fitness are stuck in the 1950s ideal or just wrong. Take any fitness magazine and you'll see buzz words like firming, toning, and spot reduction. If you're serious about working out, don't fall for these myths. Do proper research, read studies, and take advice from the pros.
Let's see the most common fitness myths that affect female fat loss and health:
Strength Training Makes Your Muscles Bulky
Many women are afraid that lifting weights will bulk them up, giving them a bodybuilder-type physique. This myth has been around for decades. The female athletes you see in magazines work out for hours every day, consume large amounts of food, and lift very heavy loads. Some also take steroids and performance enhancers to build muscle and strength.
The average woman will never get "too bulky" from lifting weights. If building muscle was that easy, athletes wouldn't be using steroids and bulking supplements. Strength training will only shape your body, burn stubborn fat, and increase muscle tone. It's also a great way to boost your confidence and self image.
You Can Spot Reduce Fat
No amount of targeted exercise can reduce fat on your thighs, belly, or arms. The only way to shed fat is to train your whole body. If you do lots of crunches and sit-ups, your abs will get stronger. However, you won’t get a six pack unless you lose fat. This requires a strict diet and regular training. What you eat will be responsible for as much as 80 percent of fat loss.
Regular Exercise Can Compensate for Bad Eating
Many women mistakenly believe that working out is a free pass to eat whatever they want. This is actually one of the most common weight loss mistakes. While it's true that exercise allows you to consume more calories, it's not an excuse to overindulge. Eat more calories than you need and you'll gain weight, It's that simple.
Strength training burns about 250 calories per hour and raises your metabolism for up to 48 hours (which an extra 200-250 calories burned). A chocolate bar has over 550 calories. Some types of cheese boost more than 500 calories per 100 grams. As you see, it takes just one bad meal or snack to get those calories back. You can't outrun bad eating.
Men and Women Should Train Differently
Contrary to popular belief, training like a man won’t make you look like one. Actually, there is no reason men and women should exercise differently. Thanks to estrogen, testosterone, genetics, and nutrition, they will get completely different results.
Men have 10 to 14 times more testosterone than their female counterparts, which allows them to pack on muscle. As a woman, you'll never be able to gain the same amount of muscle unless you're taking anabolic steroids. Training like a man will help you build that dense, lean look and get rid of flab.
The More You Work Out, the Better
Some women go to the gym daily, but have little or no results. Your body needs time to recover from exercise. Without proper rest, you'll lose muscle and feel fatigued. Additionally, your cortisol levels will increase, causing your body to hold on water and store fat. Training four or five times a week is more than enough to get the body you're after.
- Lifting weights won’t make you bulky. You can actually train just like man to get a lean, toned body. Women have lower testosterone levels than man, which limits their ability to build muscle.
- Exercise can not offset a bad diet. Just because you’re training hard, it doesn’t mean you can eat everything in sight.
- Spot reduction is a waste of time. You can not lose fat from a certain area, such as your abs or tights. The only way to shape those muscles is to do whole body workouts.
- Too much exercise is just as bad as no exercise at all. Overtraining leads to fatigue, muscle soreness, increased stress, and muscle loss.