Strength training can get a little confusing when you are thrown with contradicting information from a friend that has heard information from another a friend or a so-called gym junky that knows it all. It is important that the information you seek is coming from a qualified professional so that you are informed with evidence base information for better understanding and better results.
This topic of the week we take a look at just a few of the common misconceptions of training that eventually determines poor exercise programming.
1. Spot Reduction: �I want to lose weight in my thigh area only�
When an individual seeks to reduce body fat, you cannot decide to lose fat in a specific area only. Fat is lost from the entire body when undertaking aerobic exercise.
2. Muscle Toning: My arms have become harder/stiffer after my gym session
Toning is the defined as the reduction of body fat percentage and increase in muscles mass. Your muscles don't get harder after a couple of weight training sessions, you are feeling a recovery response from the working muscle known as direct onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
3. Unused muscle turns in to fat: My goal is to turn my fat into muscle
(Personal favourite) Muscle and fat are two completely separate cells in the body! Muscles do not turn into fat when you are sedentary. You simply reduce muscle size, increase fat cell size & subsequently increase the number of fat cells. The goal here should be reduce the size in fat cells and increase muscle mass cells.
4. Training specific part of muscle: I'm training my lower abs today
Specific targeting of a section of a muscle can only occur if the muscle fibres are running in different directions like your chest muscle called the pec major (pennate). The abdominal muscle only runs in one direction (Straplike or fusiform) so if you are going to work the lower abdominals, you will be also working the upper abdominals too!
The list goes on, but the take home message is... if you're getting conflicting information, get the information from a qualified professional so you are not let down when results day arrives. Most importantly seek qualified information to prevent injury!