Posts Tagged 'fitness'

The Top 10 Fitness Myths Of 2015

fitness-myths

When it comes to fitness its often hard to sort the fact from fiction. It seems that everyone these days has an opinion and everyone is a self-appointed fitness expert. Today we will count down the Top 10 Fitness Myths of 2015.

10. You shouldn’t eat carbohydrates after 5pm

 Your metabolism doesn’t have a watch and suddenly stop burning carbohydrates at 5pm or any other time for that matter. Eat carbohydrates at any time of day just go easy on the cake, biscuits and less nutritious choices.

 9. Lifting weights will make women bulky

 Many come to this conclusion after seeing photos of female bodybuilders. But its not just lifting weights that have made these women bulky, its also steroids, taking growth hormones and eating a ton of food.

 8. You can’t lose weight without doing cardio

 To lose weight all you need to do is expend more calories than you consume. How you do this is completely up to you. Many like to do cardio when trying to lose weight but it is by no means essential.

7. Carnitine is a potent fat burning supplement

 The research has been done and this supplement is without doubt nothing but unsubstantiated hype. Carnitine won’t help you lose fat and even in suggested doses can have some seriously unpleasant gastrointestinal side effects.

 6. Cardio should only be done early morning on an empty stomach when trying to lose body fat

 If you prefer to do your cardio first thing in the morning before breakfast that’s perfectly fine, but it is certainly not essential for fat loss. Once again the most important ingredient for fat loss is expending more calories than you consume.

 5. High protein diets are essential for fat loss

 The best fat loss diet is one that you can stick to. Most dieters quickly find that all or nothing fad diets don’t work for long term fat loss, try to eat smaller portions and increase your physical activity when aiming for fat loss.

 4. Lifting weights for high repetitions is necessary to tone muscles

 There is no such thing as toning muscles, they can only be built or maintained. If you can lift a weight for more than 15 repetitions its time to increase the weight.

 3. Creatine is a dangerous supplement

 Not many supplements are backed by strong scientific research, but creatine has been proven to significantly increase muscle strength and shorten between set recoveries. It has also been shown to be perfectly safe for those without any significant health conditions.

 2. Carbohydrates make you fat

 Poor old carbohydrates really have a bad reputation, but it really is undeserved, as they certainly don’t make you fat unless eaten in quantities that increase your calorie intake well beyond your needs.

 1. Isolation exercises are more important than compound exercises when trying to build muscle

 Compound exercises are actually vastly superior to isolation exercises when you want to build muscle. Isolation exercises only work one muscle group whereas compound movements work multiple muscle groups.

Summing it all up

 Well there we have it, the Top 10 Fitness Myths of 2015. If your trainer has told you any of these myths it may be time to start looking for a new one. Remember that when it comes to fitness everyone has an opinion, next time you hear something that just doesn’t seem right be sure to do some research before diving in head first and believing the latest myth. When seeking reliable fitness advice be sure to carefully check the qualifications of your trainer.

Ditch the gym and buy a Wii?

Are you planning on using the Wii-fit to lose weight and increase your cardiovascular fitness? If you are, it may be time to think again.

A recent study of 10 women aged 30-58 conducted by the University of Queensland, found that using the Wii-fit for 30 minutes twice a week for 10 weeks did not significantly improve cardiovascular endurance, mobility, weight loss or overall wellbeing. The study did find that using the Wii-fit significantly improved balance and lower limb strength of the participants.

Take home message

Increased physical activity is beneficial to good health and can help an individual lose weight and increase their fitness. However, I would not recommend that the Wii-fit be the only exercise an individual engages in, as there are more effective and lower cost exercise routines available. If you would like to give Wii-fit a try I recommend you use it in addition to a well structured exercise routine.  Based on the University of Queensland research, balance and strength training games are more likely to yield the best results.

– Chris Vavakis

 

Reference:

Is the Wii Fit™ a new-generation tool for improving balance, health and well-being? A pilot study

J. C. Nitz, S. Kuys, R. Isles and S. Fu
Climacteric
October 2010, Vol. 13, No. 5 : Pages 487-491

 

Photo: http://www.theage.com.au/ffximage/2008/05/14/wiifit_narrowweb__300x497,0.jpg

Weight Loss 101: Get Real and Cut the Crap!

So you want to lose some weight? I’m going to give you some simple NO BULLSHIT advice about how you can go about it. Best of all you don’t have to spend a cent.

STEP 1: First throw out all the stupid diet books, pills, shakes and supplements that the fruitcake Naturopath at the health food store sold you. There is no magic bullet nor do you need one, you CAN do this by yourself.

STEP 2: Start keeping a food diary. Write down everything that goes in your mouth, if it is food or drink it has to be written down.  Make sure you write down everything you consume as you do it. If you wait to the end of the day you WILL forget or underestimate how much you had.

STEP 3: Examine your food diary and aim to improve your diet gradually. Eating well isn’t hard but it takes a little commitment. Start by reducing portion sizes, increasing fruit and vegetables, cutting out high sugar/ high fat foods, reducing alcohol consumption and drinking more water. If you are unsure how to go about healthy eating and need some specific guidelines see the Federal Government’s Healthy Eating website.

STEP 4: Get off your butt and get moving! It doesn’t matter what you do, it is often said that the best exercise is one that you enjoy and will keep doing in the long run. Start slowly and gradually increase the frequency and intensity of your exercise sessions.  If you have not been physically active recently or have any health conditions I recommend you consult your doctor first.

Best of luck and let me know how you go!

Chris Vavakis