With Spring officially here more people are thinking about getting fit and losing weight. To help you get the best returns on the energy you invest this Spring here are the top 5 fitness pitfalls to avoid.
1. Smoothies: a large Aloha pineapple smoothie from Jamba Juice has 520 calories and 114g of sugar. However, a liter of Coke has only 404 calories and 112g of sugar. Don’t be fooled by the “no high fructose corn syrup” marketing hype. This smoothie has far more fructose in it than the liter of Coke. When it comes to your metabolism and body-fat, sugar (especially fructose) is sugar, the more you consume the worse. There is nothing natural about extracting the sugar from several pounds of fruit to make the juice that smoothies are sweetened with.
2. Only doing what you’re good at: people with hypermobile joints like yoga, and light, thin people like long distance running. We tend to only do what we’re good at, often to our detriment. If you’re born with hypermobile joints, yoga might cause harm because your joints need to learn to be more stable vs. even more mobile to last the rest of your lift. Often what you need for your goals and/or be healthy is not more of what you are already good at.
3. Fitness ADD: while variety is important, jumping from program to program to program will generally prevent any long term progress. I see this most often with people who “sorta” do program A, then decide that program A “doesn’t work”. They then jump to program B with great enthusiasm and the same “sorta” doing it “follow through”. And so on. They never face the fact that in real life (vs. television or social media) getting results is a long and difficult process, and that “sorta” really doesn’t work for any program.
4. Thinking “or” vs. “and”: some gyms will tell you it’s impossible to work hard enough if your exercise form looks good. They believe you need a certain amount of “slop.” Other gyms will have a weight loss client spend an hour doing low-intensity and boring corrective exercises instead of actually working-out. Who’s right? Is it safety and good technique or is intensity all that matters? They’re both wrong. With moderately intelligent programming, and good instruction exercise is safe, effective and fun.
5. Bodybuilding routines: if you splitting your body up into parts such as “leg day” or “arm day”, that’s a bodybuilder’s body-part split routine. Bodybuilding is a sport not a fitness program. Bodybuilding plans only work if you are willing to exercise 16 hours a week and diet until you can’t think straight. There’s nothing wrong with saying that there is more to life than diet and exercise, and doing total body exercise plans that are made for people like you and me.