Probably one of the most dangerous phrases in the English language. When a sentence starts with those two words; what follows is usually baseless nonsense.
Unfortunately, the fitness world is full of these “they say” nuggets of useless, sometimes harmful, wisdom.
Here’s what we say…
They say: “No pain, no gain”
We say: Ever heard of a condition called Rhabdomyolysis?
This is when extreme effort kills your muscle cells. These dead cells then pump myoglobin into your bloodstream, which can eventually lead to kidney failure.
Symptoms include – dark brown/red urine and extreme sickness.
Dr. Rob Kominiarek, founder of the Alpha Male Institute, says “Exercise shouldn’t be painful beyond feeling your muscles burn.”
They say: “Exercising on a machine is safer because you’re doing it right every time.”
We say: Even though it may seem that the machine automatically corrects your form, the fact is that this only happens when the machine is correctly adjusted for your height and weight.
According to Todd Schlifstein, DO, a clinical instructor at New York University Medical Center’s Rusk Institute “unless you have a coach or a trainer or someone figure out what is the right setting for you, you can make just as many mistakes in form and function, and have just as high a risk of injury, on a machine as if you work out with free weights or do any other type of nonmachine workout.”
They say: “Protein bars are a good meal substitute.”
We say: Not unless you make them yourself. Protein bars are extremely processed. Foods that have been excessively processed burn fewer calories.
Granted, protein bars are a tasty treat that can replace a chocolate bar. Please don’t endow them with superpowers.
They say: “More sweat, less fat!”
We say: Yeah, no. Fat is oxidized inside your body and sweating is the way your body releases heat. You can’t vaporize fat just because you’re sweating.
They say: “You can’t gain muscle after 40”
We say: Age is just a number. Unless you’ve been weight training since you were a teenager, you’re still a training baby. So despite wear and tear, you can build muscle, you’ll just have to train harder.
It would be a good idea, to test for any hormonal deficiencies. If there is a problem, you can consider hormone replacements to avoid risks of osteoporosis and heart failure.
They say: “You can’t eat after 6pm”
We say: Your body doesn’t recognize time; it does however recognize stress (which would in this case be your workout) and recovery.
It doesn’t matter what time you work out- you need to maintain your post workout diet. It’s essential to helping your body recover.
The time of day should never control when you eat. When you need to eat out of nutritional need: Eat! If you didn’t get enough calories during the day, you may eat them at night.
They say: “Carbs make you fat”
We say: No. Carbs are the body’s immediate fuel source. When you cut out carbs, your body must convert fat and protein into energy which takes more time and effort, and this slows you down.
This kind of diet forces the body to compensate for a lack of readily available energy. You could then begin to experience muscle atrophy and decreased metabolism.
Cutting out carbs negatively impacts your progress, this means less intensity, less stress and a lack of gains.
With more experience, you could probably begin to cut back on carbs. But remember- carbs don’t make gain weight, being inactive and overeating does.
Be careful of who you trust. Hearsay benefits no-one and could lead to serious problems. If you’re unsure of something that you’ve heard, feel free to consult our qualified trainers who are eager to safely guide you down the fitness path.
Don’t be fooled. Don’t get hurt. And always thrive.