Top Lies Fitness Industry Wants You To Believe

There’s professional sport and there’s exercise.

There’s muscle hypertrophy and there’s strength.

There’s fitness and there’s health.

Both members of each pair do not necessarily go hand in hand, especially if you are a newbie looking for fast results.

Did you ever have a feeling something’s off in the the whole ‘get fit’ industry that’s booming so much now? Good, because this feeling is correct.

The fitness industry wants us to live a couple of lies that are their cash cows.

I don’t blame them because I’m all for that money-making hustle, but let’s clear our vision and take it from there:

Lie: You need a gym membership.

no need for a gym membership to get fit

“Hey honey, yeah – I’ll be hitting the gym tonite… Yeah, a bit later – you know the traffic…”

Truth: You can get in a very decent shape without ever visiting a gym.

Moving, stretching and using your body weight is free and has always been. Many of the machines in the gym are completely useless and give you an illusion of a workout; some are harmful for a newbie.

Some will say that there’s a motivational aspect to having a gym membership (you paid up and you sorta have to go) – but lets get real, if you need motivation so bad that you prefer to fool yourself with the sunken cost dilemma – you won’t last long in the gym either.

Lie: You need hi-tech stuff to track your performance.

you dont need fitness trackers to perform.

This picture is from 2012, and things haven’t changed much. These gadgets track your pulse and calculate supposed calorie spend. Photo: Ariel Zambelich/Wired

Truth: The maximum you’ll ever need is a stopwatch or a regular watch to measure your pulse.

After you measure your pulse for a week you’ll be able to tell if the rate is normal even without a stopwatch.

Forget all the bullshit apps, calorie counters, wearable trackers and so on – those are just players on the market and they love to eat just like the rest of us.

Most of them are wrong, some of them are misleading, many are not suitable for you and all of them have a legal disclaimer that says, in a nutshell, “we’re not guilty if you die trying to impress our thingie here”.

Now, if you are a fan of some gadget already and if that is helping you somehow don’t get all defensive – use it. But don’t postpone your workouts because you are “not equipped yet”.

Lie: Everyone should start weightlifting right now. Deadlifts, squats, butt models, blah blah.

lifting weights may not be the best starting point

I’m happy for these dolls but should overweight 40-year olds grab a barbell first thing? Nope.

Truth: There are literally hundreds of things you can do before weight lifting.

This lie goes hand in hand with the gym one but it deserves its’ own spot in the idea hell.

We’re bombarded by billions of selfies of fit chicks under 28 who “lift”. I’m putting “lift” in quotes because they hardly ever share the real details of what they do, and neither these routines will immediately work for you.

You’d be amazed how many people end up with joint injuries and chronic pains because they throw themselves at barbells.

Start with body weight and static exercises and move to iron only after you’ve mastered those. That way you’ll get your body in shape and prepare it for more intense work.

If you think I’m full of crap, here’s an old video of a guy who does not even lift and has no gym membership:

Notice how he’s also not wearing a calorie tracking visor? Ask your local pump-armed gym rats to repeat half of his tricks and they won’t be able to.

Lie: You can “tone up” a certain part of your body with some sort of a focused effort.

melt the muffin top, tone up the abs - none of this is possible

…that muffin top tho

Truth: You won’t be able to remove fat just from that one spot you hate.

Again, this appealing idea is used to sell “niche” products, like “ab toning massage belts”, guides or “love handle removing creams”. You need to give all muscles of your body something to work with, or one muscle group will atrophy while another one will be under stress (your classic arm-focused leg day-skipping newbie bodybuilder) – and the fat remains where it was.

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