An 18 year old girl, fitness enthusiast and dedicated Olympic style weightlifter, Level 2 Weightlifting coach, Powerlifter, and non-competitive Irish dancer. I'm determined to live a healthier lifestyle and take care of my body whilst influencing other young people to do so. I never doubt my ability to achieve something; I just change what I'm doing until I succeed.
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Perhaps you’ve heard of so called “facts” about health and aren’t actually sure whether they’re true or not. Often people will say these “facts” to convince a person not to or to do something. Here are some health myths and their actual facts.
Myth: Sweat is fat crying
Many people may have been told after becoming overly sweaty from working out that it means that they are burning more calories. Don’t worry if you do sweat whilst working out or afterwards, this simply proves that you are working hard and pushing yourself to exercise.
Fact: Sweat is well… water
Sweat is not “fat crying” or proves you have burnt more calories the more you’ve sweated. It is really a natural reaction of the body which helps you to cool down your body temperature. How much you sweat can depend on how hard you are working, what the weather is like and whether it’s hot or cold where you are exercising.
Myth: If I lift weights, I’ll get bulky
Mainly women have this idea that they may get bulky if they lift weights and not resemble a “lady-like” figure. Lifting weights will help you to gain muscle which could eventually become noticeably large after many years.
Fact: You’ll gain muscle and improve your figure!
By lifting weights, you won’t receive results of a body builder but similar to a long distance runner. If you look at a person who takes supplements or steroids, don’t become hesitant to start lifting if you fear you will develop an unnatural looking body. Weight lifting is good for you and can help you get the results you want. Also, if you’re a women you don’t produce the same hormones as men, and the male hormone (testosterone) enables men to develop muscle mass more easily than women.
Myth: "No pain, no gain"
It is said often that without any pain whilst exercising, you will not gain muscle or the results you want. This doesn’t apply to sports which often involve pain (boxing or other fighting sports).
Fact: Stop if you’re in pain
If you’re exercising and begin to feel pain in your body, I suggest you stop immediately as the chances are you are creating an injury or have already got one. Injuries whilst working out can be caused by training too hard and often, working the same muscles continuously or performing the exercise incorrectly.
Myth: You need a gym membership to get fit
Gym memberships are commonly used by people who are active or want to get fitter; having a membership to a certain place may benefit people who need motivation by getting up and going somewhere.
Fact: Work out wherever you are
In order to get fit, you don’t need to have a gym membership. In fact, working out at home can be just as good and there is plenty of free content online and in books which can help you to develop a routine. As long as you’re working out, it doesn’t matter where you are. So don't fret if you can't afford to pay for a gym membership, they are completely optional. I personally prefer working out at home than at the gym anyways, it means you control all the decisions surrounding your work out.
Myth: Crunches are the best ab exercise
Crunches are placed quite highly as one of the “best” exercises, but that depends on how you perform the exercise (e.g. with weights or on a hard surface).
Fact: Crunches can sometimes increase injuries
Crunches can sometimes put a lot of pressure on your spine if done continuously and often on a hard surface. They also won’t give you ab muscles any quicker and different core activities such as planking, leg ups and bicycle crunches can actually benefit you more. I’m not saying never to try crunches again, but do stop doing the exercise if you experience lower back pain.
So those were a few examples of myths which are often assumed to be factual. I hope that these new facts have helped you to realise the importance surrounding what you believe about health assumptions and myths.