Starting a new exercise regime can be daunting, especially with the amount of misinformation out there. Fortunately, we are here to debunk those myths and help you get moving in a way that works for your body. Here are five common fitness myths to leave behind, according to Accredited Exercise Physiologist, Jennifer Smallridge.
“You need to get a sweat on.”
Sweat isn’t a signal of exercise intensity, but rather how much your body needs cooling down. Some people naturally sweat more than others, so embrace your body’s air conditioning system without focusing on it too much.
“No pain, no gain.”
Hopefully this myth has been dispelled once and for all, but in case you needed to hear it: don’t push through sharp, uncomfortable or unfamiliar pain! It is normal to feel tender the day after a workout, but if you notice something strange going on mid-movement, take a pause and seek help if needed.
“You need to do your 30 minutes all at once”
Did you know that accumulating three bouts of 10 minutes per day gives you similar health benefits to the full 30? Breaking it down into smaller chunks feels more achievable and can help fit exercise into a busy day.
“You can ‘spot reduce’ body fat.”
Another old myth, but worth revisiting. If fat reduction is a goal, look for whole body cardiovascular and strengthening exercises, rather than hours on the ab machine at the gym.
“Water exercise isn’t as effective as land exercise.”
Although things can feel slightly easier in the water, your muscles are still producing force and your cardiovascular system is working hard! Minute for minute, swimming burns more calories than walking and can also be more friendly on the joints.