OK, so many people (including myself) have at one point suffered from believing myths. I am going to set some of them straight!
Myth: Magazine diets actually work!
Fact: Magazine diets induce loosing muscle and water weight. It does nothing for fat loss and the second you stop the diet, you WILL gain every ounce back. Sorry, but fad diets don't work. Rule of thumb - If it sounds like it won't work (cereal diet, coffee and peanuts, etc.) it probably won't.
Myth: Diet pills actually induce fat loss!
Fact: This was at one point a true statement. The drugs used in diet pills that made them work before are banned because they actually worked (I still think its stupid that they were banned from diet pills). You can, however, still get your hands on these drugs. Caffeine and Ephedrine are still highly available in most drug stores and grocery stores (that have a pharmacy). Ephedrine must be purchased at the pharmacy section. It is under the name of Bronkaid. It is also helpful if you have some breathing problems (it is actually used for asthma). Don't worry about needing a prescription. It is the same kind of deal for getting sudafed.
Myth: you can target fat loss by working only the muscles in that area.
Fact: Fat is gained evenly all over your body. Fat is lost in t he same way. You don't want to end up with one part of your body REALLY strong, and the rest pathetically weak, do you?
Myth: I'm a girl, so I need to lift low weights on high reps so I don't get bulky.
Fact: Girls gain muscle at a much slower rate and don't have the risk of becoming body builder bulky. Most women in body building competitions take testosterone supplements to become that bulky. Lift like a guy and see the amazing results. I am a girl who lifts like this, and I can already see the difference! I don't see bulk, I see a natural, sexy tone!
Myth: Machine lifts are just as good as free weights!
Fact: Machine lifts actually don't allow the same amount of motion. You really are cheating yourself by only doing machine lifts. Free weights are more intimidating, but most people in gyms are more than happy to help you out with form and as being a spotter. You always want to do research on your form so that you don't end up hurting yourself (I used to do hyper extentions by arching my back ALL the way up and ended up with a lot of back pain. I started going high enough to make my back even and the pain stopped).
Myth: Running is a good way to loose weight!
Fact: This gets exagerated so much. Running is a good aid to weight loss. There are many different kinds of running you can do (ex: distance training, interval training, etc.) Running is more effective, however, if paired with wight lifting.
Tips for running: Don't run on tredmills, concrete or other very hard surfaces, sand and other extremely soft surfaces. Cushioned tracks and grass are the best places to run as they won't induce knee injury (take my word for this, I learned this the hard way...)
Stay tuned for the next Lifting Essentials. Sorry for the delay between the first and this edition. I didnt feel qualified to write on a topic I wasn't taking part in (I stopped lifting over the summer)