It’s no secret that regular exercise is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. However, there’s a lot of bad information out there about the benefits of choosing one workout routine over another. So, let’s review the most common exercise myths with intel we got from ABC News and sports medicine specialist Dr. Sherwin Ho.
- Myth #1: Eating protein after a workout will help build muscle. That’s FALSE. The average North American diet already provides more than enough protein – whether you work out or not. What your body really needs after exercise is more carbohydrates! They supply the fuel your body burns during your workout, called glycogen – which is mainly stored in your muscles. So if you’re going to eat anything, choose foods high in complex carbs – like fruits and vegetable.
- Myth #2: Exercising only once a week isn’t worth doing at all. That’s also FALSE. Dr. Ho says that any exercise is better than no exercise and people who work out on a regular basis – even just once a week – are more likely to adopt healthy lifestyle habits. However, if you’re trying to lose weight, a once-a-week “binge” routine won’t cut it.
- Myth #3: Weight gain’s inevitable with age. Again, that’s FALSE. Most people gain weight because they become more sedentary as they get older or they try to maintain the same diet they had as a teenager. The fact is, your metabolism slows down with age, and your body needs fewer calories. So eat accordingly.
- Myth #4: Running destroys your joints. For most people, that’s FALSE. Dr. Ho says running only becomes a problem if you have a history of leg injuries, or if you’re obese. Otherwise, healthy people who follow proper running habits – like replacing their shoes on a regular basis – rarely end up with joint damage.
- Myth #5: If your parents are overweight, you’ll get fat too. Again, that’s FALSE. At some point, YOU have to take full responsibility for your body – not your parents. So don’t blame them if you choose a high calorie diet and become a couch potato! Bottom line: Your personal food choices and exercise habits are the only factors that will determine your weight.