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10 (Lame) Fitness Rules You Need to Quit Being Seduced By

10 (Lame) Fitness Rules You Need to Quit Being Seduced By

Seduction is oftentimes associated with sexy activities, or at least something in that realm.

Until now.  People are seduced in their everyday lives. Seduction is being lured, enticed, or bribed into something.

The fitness industry is great at seducing people (me included). I’ve been seduced more times than I care to admit in the past with various rules I thought I had to follow if I wanted to achieve any progress.

These rules are so tempting at times, because we see so many people do them. Fitness doesn’t need to be black and white. There’s more than one way to master the skill of fitness and achieve lifelong healthy habits.

Following a set of rules that cramp your style, make you feel bad about yourself, and causes you unhappiness isn’t what you should call an awesome quality of life. Allow me to share with you 10 of the lamest fitness rules you need to quit following immediately.

Lame Rule #1- No Carbs at Night

We’ve all heard the rule, eat your carbs in the evening and you’ll get fatter. Eating carbs at night doesn’t make you fat or cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories is what causes weight gain.

Your body doesn’t magically say “hey its 7pm, I’m going to store all the carbs into my fat cells now.”

There isn’t such a thing as daytime and nighttime metabolism. Here’s a study where individuals ate carbs in the evening and got leaner(the irony).

Feel free to eat your carbs at night, allow yourself 2-3 hours before going to bed. This helps digestion and allows insulin to return to baseline levels. Carbs also help trigger serotonin release, which will help induce sleep and relaxation.

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Lame Rule #2- You Must Cut Out All Carbs to Lose Fat

We live in a carb phobic society where carbs are public enemy number one when it comes to weight gain. Obesity rising isn’t because of carbohydrates, it’s because people eat too much.

Low carb diets are great for those who are sedentary, but for the active folk, it’s a terrible idea in the long run. Constantly working out without properly replenishing your body with carbs halts your recovery. Other signs of needing more carbs include increased crankiness, brain fog (not getting enough glucose), and issues on the toilet (hello constipation).

Lame Rule #3- Cardio is Needed for Fat Loss

Seduction runs rampant when it comes to our dependence on cardio. Cardio isn’t the only way to lose fat, in fact depending on your fitness goals, it can be counterproductive. Cardio is a great tool to include once you have your nutrition under control, you are strength training consistently, and your stress levels are under control.

Cardio burns plenty of calories, but that’s only while you’re exercising. Weight training burns calories during and after exercising leading to more calories burned.

When it comes to battling the bulge, fall in love with weight training. Save the cardio for when you hit a plateau.

Lame Rule #4- (Insert diet) is the Only Diet That Will Work

Whether it’s Paleo, intermittent fasting, alternate day fasting, Mediterranean diet, or a Japanese village style diet…they all work. There isn’t one diet plan that has to be used over the other.

Are there diets that are more optimal for people and their specific lifestyle? Absolutely.

The key is tailoring your diet to cater to your lifestyle without adding extra stress (there’s enough of that already).

Resist the carefully marketed seduction techniques that you see. Install a way of eating that makes you happy and is sustainable over the long haul.

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Lame Rule #5- You Need Supplements to Make Progress

Supplements aren’t a necessity. They’re meant to ‘supplement’ an already established healthy lifestyle. Think of supplements as icing on the cake. Supplements don’t replace the hard work it takes to make a transformation, no matter how sexy or awesome that new supplement ad sounds.

Stay consistent with lifting weights and eating real foods. There are no quick fixes. Get plenty of rest.

Then. Just maybe. You should consider using supplements.

Lame Rule #6- Fat Can Be Spot Reduced Through Exercise

Whether it’s abs, thighs, butt (glutes if ya fancy), or arms, men and women are equally obsessed with the idea of toning up a specific area.

Sadly, those thousands of crunches or hundreds of reps on the inner thigh machine won’t expedite fat burning in those areas. If you have a lot of bodyfat to lose, those areas will still be hidden underneath the existing layer of fat. You can’t pick and choose where bodyfat will burn off from. Focus on reducing body fat through eating healthier.

Lame Rule #7- You Need Soreness for Progress

“No pain. No gain.”

“Don’t quit. You’re already in pain. You’re already hurt. Get a reward from it.”

Those are two of the most seducing rallying cries that many use for fitness motivation. I’m here to tell you though, you don’t need to be sore, ‘hurting’, or in pain after every workout to experience results.

Muscle soreness is the result of small tears in your muscle fibers.. It’s common to be sore after the first few workouts after implementing a new workout routine or program.

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Constantly being sore is a great sign you aren’t recovering enough. You grow and become stronger by taking adequate amounts of rest.

Lame Rule #8- Go Gluten Free To Get Results

If you have celiac disease, problems with lactose, or other food allergies, then you should by all means avoid foods that don’t suit your well being.

If you don’t have these problems, please stop using gluten free or any other ‘free diet’ as the reason why weight isn’t falling off. It’s not the wheat, rye, nor milk that is making you bloated and miserable. The junk included in your diet is causing these problems.

If you feel better by eliminating certain foods, then by all means go for it. Just don’t blindly follow some fad diet without testing on yourself. It could all be in your head(non celiac gluten sensitivity for example).

Lame Rule #9-You Need a “Six-Pack” to Look Good.

Look around at newsstands and every health, beauty, and lifestyle magazine has some guy or girl showing off their perfect arms and midsections. Our culture is obsessed with body image to a fault.

If it isn’t abs, then its reducing thighs, toning arms, or that ridiculous thigh gap nonsense. While it’s great to have goals of improving your body composition, your entire self-worth shouldn’t rest on these goals.

You’re good enough already.

Ladies. Embrace your bodies as they are. Striving to make yourself stronger and improving your current self is great. Improve your body for you and only you. If a guy or anyone else has a problem with your body…tell them to go kick rocks.

Guys. A six pack isn’t the end all be. Obsessing over your body gets in the way of living life. Having racks and racks of muscle isn’t as important as you think(can we say overkill).

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Working out only for the six pack, toning the arms, tightening the thighs is shortening yourself of all the awesome benefits working out provides.

The key to happiness and a lifelong habit of exercising is to find motivation that goes deeper than just physical appearance.

Lame Rule #10- Women Shouldn’t Lift Heavy.

This rule is slowly seducing less women as time goes along.

I encounter women everyday who keep lifting the 5 lb weights and performing endless sets of tricep kickbacks. They’re working hard, but results aren’t following. The problem lies with woman being afraid to lift heavy.

Lifting heavy is what gives ladies the ever so desired ‘toned look’. Due to different ratios of specific hormones, it’s near impossible for women to develop the same muscular build of males.

So feel free to start squatting, hip thrusting, and deadlifting your little heart away.

Remember, our society forms these generalized ideals of what’s attractive; you can choose what you find attractive.

What are some lame fitness rules you wish would go away? Comment below or tweet at me.

Featured photo credit: Method Fitness via flickr.com

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Julian Hayes II

Author, Health & Fitness Coach for Entrepreneurs, & Speaker

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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