(CARLSBAD, CA) – Myths are entertaining when they involve Greek gods and goddesses or tales of the Trojan War. But, myths about physical fitness can be downright dangerous.
Dozens of myths circulate the physical fitness world, and sometimes it’s hard to separate fact from fiction. As you celebrate National Physical Fitness Month this May, take a look at these common fitness myths.
Myth # 1: Exercise turns my fat into muscle - We all dream about our fat miraculously transforming into muscle as we log hours on the treadmill. But, the truth is that muscle and fat are two entirely different types of tissues. One type simply cannot turn into the other. However, if you exercise, you will buildup muscle fibers, and fat cells will shrink as you burn more calories than you eat.
Myth # 2: No pain, no gain - You may think that you didn’t work hard enough if you don’t feel sore the next day. This is completely untrue. Sure, it’s normal to have delayed onset muscle soreness when you first start a fitness program. But, other than that, muscle soreness is an indication that your exercise was too intense. Exercising too hard causes damage to your muscles, resulting in swelling and pain. So, when you have sore muscles, let them rest, and take it a little easier at the gym next time around.
Myth # 3: Lifting weights will make me bulk up - Most women don’t have the testosterone levels needed to look like the Hulk. Besides that, you would have to spend countless hours lifting extremely heavy weights to create the professional bodybuilder look. So, don’t shy away from weight training. Regular strength training will actually make you look leaner. That’s because a pound of muscle takes up less space than a pound of fat.
Myth # 4: I can spot reduce my belly fat with crunches - There is no such thing as spot reduction, unless it involves a trip to the plastic surgeon. Crunches or any abdominal exercises will strengthen your muscles, but you cannot direct your body to lose pounds in a particular area. So, continue with exercises for your abdominal region. Then complement those workouts with cardiovascular activities to burn calories. As you burn more calories than you take in, you will shed fat, and your muscle will become more visible. Of course, genetics will decide which area of your body shrinks first.
Myth # 5: Exercise is more effective in the morning - The early bird may catch the worm, but workouts can be equally valuable at any time of the day. There is no solid research to support that one time of the day is more effective than another. That means the best time for you to exercise is when you will stick with it! Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett recommends finding a time of day that works for you, then blocking off that time on your calendar.
Myth # 6: For noticeable results, I have to live at the gym - You may not gain Hilary Swank’s Million-Dollar Baby body overnight, but you don’t have to set-up camp at your local gym to see genuine results. Both the American College of Sports Medicine and the U.S. Surgeon General recommend 30 minutes of exercise on most days of the week. And even if you can’t meet those guidelines, keep in mind that some exercise is always better than no exercise.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,500 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.