Information. Everywhere you turn, information overload. Everyone has an opinion, and unfortunately the mass media acts to create, spread and reinforce many incorrect pieces of information.
In the world of health and fitness these become myths. These myths often dramatically outweigh genuine factual and sound information. This sends millions of people on an ineffective or even detrimental journey in their quest to get in better physical shape.
Today we're going to squash 5 of the biggest offenders that have seen guys waste endless hours and energy in the wrong direction.
Myth One : 'Long cardio is the best for losing fat'
Fat loss is complex, and we do want to increase our overall energy expenditure (think long cardio), BUT the various effects that resistance training provide, including increased muscle mass, better hormonal environment and time efficiency, all make for hitting the weights room as your better option on the whole. Lift heavy weight and incorporate high intensity.
Myth Two: 'Crunches will give you abs'
No, no, no, no. Doing a specific exercise to work the muscles in an area will not lead to dropping fat in that area. Crunches will make your abs stronger and help shape them, but this only applies when the fat goes. See above.
Myth Three: 'Squats are bad for you knees / Dead lifts are bad for your back'
Doing squats with good technique are good for knee health and function, as are proper dead lifts with a neutral spine good for your back. Poor technique can be detrimental, as with anything. If you need guidance, seek it out. Watch here for squat cues and watch here for dead lift.
Myth Four : 'Isolation to build muscle'
While isolating certain muscles helps them grow, most guys will benefit from more 'bang for your buck' multi-joint compound exercises such as squats, dead lifts, pulling/rowing and pressing. Prioritise these for most of your workout, then isolate to finish off.
Myth Five: 'Supplements are vital to grow/shred'
Supplements are to fill holes. You do not need protein powder (and others) to grow, you need protein (food) and the right exercise stimulation. If you're struggling to get what you need, then supplement.
Just remember, question the 'facts' that are out there. Don't over consume information, find a source you trust (hint hint) and stay curious.