don’t believe the hype

Your body (and you!!) by caseyly16

I’ve been doing quite a bit of research lately on fitness and nutrition. I’ve come to realize that there are literally millions of contradictory health tips out there.  So what I’m going to attempt to do is cover the basics by exposing the false notions and providing their factual counterparts. I’ve noticed a lot of trends in my research, and I intend to spell that out right here.


more after the jump!


Myth #1: Fat turns into muscle
Comments: No, it does not. Muscles are built with amino acids from proteins, and there aren’t any of those in your fat. The reason people believe that fat turns into muscle is because when they workout, they notice that they lose fat and gain muscles. Well, two simultaneous actions are occuring: you are losing fat during your recovery period (body breaks it down for energy) and you are gaining muscle (body takes carbohydrates and proteins to build muscles, which leads to myth #2).

Myth #2: Cutting out carbs is good
Comments: Thank you Atkins for that one. No, your body NEEDS carbohydrates in order to function. Otherwise, your body would just break down your muscles and a bit of your fat  for energy instead. However, unless you’re looking to become a stick figure, EAT YOUR CARBS. Hint: Complex carbs (look it up) are the way to go.

Myth#3: Using supplements will result in big gains.
Comments: Your best bet is to stick to natural food. Sports supplements such as protein shakes are only effective if you’re unable to obtain nutrients from your everyday diet, otherwise, stick to eating lots of vegetables and some lean meats with every meal, and you’ll be okay. Hint: Chocolate milk has been proven to be the most effective post workout drink. And it’s tasty! Also, eat as much as you can raw. When you cook foods, especially vegetables, many of the nutrients are lost.

Myth #4: Doing crunches will give you a six pack
Comments: For emphasis, the following sentence will be in all caps…LOSING FAT AND BUILDING MUSCLE ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS. While doing crunches will certainly build and tone muscle, it wont do a damn thing if you have a couple layers of protective covering over them. You have to put in the work to lose the fat, and THEN you’ll start to see your abs.

Myth #5: Running/Cardio is more effective than weight lifting for losing fat.
Comments: Nope. Cardio may help you lose more calories while you do it but when it comes to burning fat weight lifting is the way to go. I see your puzzled expression, so I’m going to tell you why. Weight lifting breaks down your muscles, meaning that you will probably spend the next day or so recovering. This recovery period gives you a higher resting BMR(Metabolism) and therefore your body will burn more calories maintaining itself. However, the best way to go is to have a balanced combination of cardio and weight lifting.

Myth#6: Three meals a day is the way to go.
Comments: It’s actually best to eat 5 to 6 SMALL  meals a day, or every 2-3 hours. The reason being is that it will keep your metabolism high and your body constantly digesting, which will lead to more fat burned. Plus, because you are consistently eating, your sugar levels will stay leveled out and you won’t experience those sudden bouts of tiredness in the afternoon. Just make sure to eat healthy meals.

Myth#7: Milk is bad.
Comments: Milk is an excellent source of protein, fat, and carbohydrate. Yes, fats (there are good fats and then there are bad fats…milk has the good ones). It also gives you healthy bones and teeth (calcium) as well as lots of vitamin D. I could really name hundreds of reasons why milk is one of the best drinks in the world, but I’m lazy. Just go out and buy some, and make sure you always have some in the fridge, okay?


-DRINK A BOATLOAD OF WATER EVERYDAY (not all at once, please)

-Every meal should include vegetables or fruits, and protein. Make sure you are getting a good balance of complex carbohydrates and proteins throughout the days. Vegetables and fruits are invaluable with providing your body with nutrients and vitamins (I’ve actually substituted my daily multi-vitamin with vitamins from real food!

-Ditch the sweets. This includes juices. It’s a lot better to get your daily dose of sweetness from actual fruits rather than sugary things such as juice, soda, and candy.

-Processed foods are trouble. Anything that has an ingredient list longer than my you-know-what is probably not so good for you. The more processed foods are, the less natural nutrients it contains. So stick with that raw shit, baby.

-The best way to get in shape is to find something you enjoy doing. Usually, it’s a sport. For me, I love to kickbox and play basketball so when I haven’t worked out for a while I’ll hit the boxing gym or the bball courts and play. When I’m out of breathe after the first 10 minutes I realize I need to get my ass in gear, so I start hitting the weights. One thing will the lead to the other…just do what you enjoy and be always looking to improve!

-Be conscious of your body. You might think this is easy and natural, but you have to really train yourself to listen to your body sometimes. Pushing yourself too hard is an easy way to injure yourself (this is NOT an excuse to be lazy).

-Focus on BREATHING. Breathing in rhythm with your exercise is EXTREMELY important. Getting oxygen to the proper parts of your body is essential to exercise!

-Focus on STRETCHING. The number one way to prevent injuries. Stretch for five to ten minutes before strenious activity and ten to twenty minutes after wards. Stretching also benefits your speed and agility. Yes, I know it’s painful, but like homework, it’s something that has to be done.

-Final tip…don’t sit for too long! If you have to study or work in an office, get up and move every 20 to 30 minutes. The best way to do it is every 20 minutes remind yourself to get up and go get yourself some water (2 birds, one stone).



1 Comment so far
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Excellent tips and comments!

A great idea is to combine your breathing training with stretching by doing 20-30 minutes of yoga, even if you’re not going to train that day.

Although I agree with you, and I’m a big fan of going as natural as possible (a good fruit/vegetable mix throughout the day instead of vitamins and lean meat for most of your protein source), when training I find it important to take a protein supplement (my favorite is Protein Extreme) that does not have sugars and other ingredients and that is rapidly absorbed and utilized by your body. This can greatly improve your recovery rate.

Comment by Brian

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