More and more people have started pursuing a healthy lifestyle. In order to look better and feel better most of them start with physical fitness. However, just like anything else, being active should be done wisely.
Be Healthy learned some curious facts about fitness that can help make your training sessions more effective, helpful, and pleasant. At the end of the article, there is a bonus that will probably give you more motivation to be physically active.
1. You’ll have to wait for visible results for a long time.
Don’t expect quick results when starting physical training. Those who want to get in shape “by summer” or within a couple of months of January 1st will likely fail. Of course, everything initially depends on your current body weight, your body’s condition, and your age. In any case, you’ll be able to see the first results from workouts after approximately 2 or 3 months. It will take others about 6 months to be able to see positive changes in your body. Also, it’s important to understand that regularity, frequency of training, and the right diet are the foundation of your success. There won’t be much change in your body if you only do 2 intense workouts per week — you can only get good results if you do at least 3 power and 2 cardio workouts per week. This doesn’t mean that you’ll have to spend 5 days a week at the gym — an ordinary walk outside can be a good cardio exercise for your body.
2. You won’t always be able to reach your desired results.
If you have an image of the ideal body shape in your mind that you want to attain with the help of physical fitness, be prepared that you might not reach the desired results. First of all, you should take into account your genetics, as well as how you’re physically built. Some people’s muscles tend to grow faster, while other people might have better metabolism. Moreover, many professional athletes and fitness trainers use special nutrition to achieve their desired shape. Therefore, if you set an unreachable goal that goes against what your body is even capable of, you may not only lose motivation, but also get an unbalanced body shape. In order to set the right goal, you should assess yourself objectively, take into account your opportunities and limitations, and try to attain the best shape for your body.
3. It’s enough to have 5-7 training sessions with a trainer.
Personal trainers like to say that each person needs a personal training program and that you won’t be able to do it yourself. This is not true. You need a trainer who will teach you the right techniques and 5-7 sessions are usually enough to figure this out. After that, you’ll be able to do workouts by yourself. After one and a half months, you can try some training sessions with another trainer so that they can check to see whether you’re doing everything correctly, as well as answer any questions that you have. After that, you shouldn’t require any more help, unless you are the type of person who can’t discipline and motivate yourself without someone else’s assistance.
4. Only the basic exercises can help build a beautiful body.
It’s profitable for trainers to keep a client as long as possible, that’s why they often ignore basic exercises and offer a lot of isolated exercises that work out singular muscles. However, you should understand that they should be focusing on basic exercises in order to get good results. Basic exercises include lunges, planks, deadlifts, squats, and pushups. It’s these that help us build a muscle corset. At the same time, basic exercises also have different efficiency. It’s important to understand during practical workouts which exercises get the best response from your muscles. For example, for some people, squats are the best exercise to work out the muscles of the buttocks, while for others it might be lunges. Of course, isolation exercises are important too and they can sometimes even be more interesting to perform, but you shouldn’t limit yourself to just doing those.
5. Basically, you don’t need to stick to a special sports nutrition diet.
Newcomers to gyms often tend to believe in the magic power of sports nutrition. In reality, you don’t need to follow something like this as long as you have a diverse and proper diet, and you’re not trying to take part in a bikini competition. Don’t start anything like this, even if a trainer at the gym insists on adding protein or fat burners to your diet. They might be simply trying to earn some money with your help by recommending you to a magical product from the neighboring fitness bar. You don’t need a fat burner because you’ll be burning your fat during workouts. The right diet together with regular workouts will result in your getting into shape in the future, without any special sports nutrition.
6. You probably won’t be able to completely get rid of cellulite with the help of a fitness routine.
Everyone probably already understands that anti-cellulite cosmetics doesn’t exist. But many people still believe that regular physical workouts can help you forget about this issue once and for all. This is not completely true. No workouts remove cellulite, it doesn’t matter whether they are weightlifting or cardio. Even if you have productive training sessions, and eat a lot of healthy food, cellulite can stay with you. There is good news though — if you keep doing regular physical workouts and start watching your diet, you can make your cellulite less visible.
7. You don’t need to do abs regularly in order to get a beautiful belly.
Many people like to do abs every time they visit the gym, but this is not necessary. And some ab exercises can even widen the waist. You don’t need to work out your abs regularly in order to get a fit belly — your core will get enough action during basic exercises. Lunges and squats workout your muscles much better than twists. So, one ab training session per week is more than enough.
8. You can’t build muscle if you only do Pilates, dance, or yoga.
In order to get a sculpted and muscular body, we need our muscles to work hard. And they work hard during power workouts. In general, muscles burn more calories because it takes a lot of energy to feed and maintain them. Group training sessions like Pilates, dance, and yoga are a great addition to the gym but not a complete replacement. If your goal is to do more than just lose a few pounds and get into a good mood, remember that power workouts are important too.
9. Women should do more reps and rest less between exercises.
Fitness for men and women differs. The secret to success in female training sessions is having more tension time with shorter breaks for rest. It’s instinctive for women to not work their muscles out until they reach their peak because they have an inner setting that prevents them from overstraining their body. That’s why it’s important for women to focus on loading their muscles by doing more reps instead of working with heavier weights. 30-40 seconds of rest between reps is enough for women. Men, in this case, need more time for restoring their strength and energy after working with heavy loads.
10. It’s not OK to work out a lot and eat very little.
A calorie deficit is necessary if you want to lose weight, but you shouldn’t go to extremes. If you work out a lot in the gym but eat very little, your body will respond by slowing down your metabolism and switching to an energy saving mode. That’s why you shouldn’t work out on a daily basis and significantly cut back on calories — it will only exhaust you and your body. Moreover, an overstrained body feels more stressed and thus tends to gain more weight with the goal of storing energy. If you want to lose weight, try not to eat 1-2 hours after power load workouts.
11. Cardio training must be performed correctly.
Cardio training is a complete form of training, during which you train your cardiovascular and respiratory systems, increase your endurance, and burn fat. If you allot a whole day for cardio, keep in mind that the process of burning fat starts 40 minutes after starting a workout. This means that you will have to spend more than an hour on the treadmill or on an elliptical machine. If you perform a cardio session immediately after power load training, the fat loss begins from the first minute, which means that 20 minutes of cardio will be enough.
Watch your pulse while performing cardio training — it should stay within certain limits. If your pulse doesn’t reach the lower limit of your heart rate, you’ll get very weak results. If your pulse is higher than the upper limit, you risk damaging your health.
12. You can get into shape without visiting a gym.
If you have good genes and don’t overuse harmful food and alcohol, you can build a beautiful body on your own without visiting a gym. The main factor is doing training on a regular basis. Consistency is 90% of your success. If you regularly exercise at home several times a week, walk, and follow a healthy diet, success is guaranteed.