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Balance365 Life Radio


Apr 10, 2019

Join Annie in this solo episode where she debunks the three biggest exercise myths she hears as a personal trainer with over a decade of experience. The myths that are commonly accepted to be true often hold back from true enjoyment of exercise and leave them focussed on the wrong things. Annie sets the record straight and answers the questions on most women's’ minds.

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Are ab exercises the key to a six pack?
  • Can you spot reduce fat?
  • Which elements influence if you have visible abs?
  • Does sweating help you burn more calories?
  • Why we sweat
  • Does strength training make women big and bulky?
  • Benefits of strength training

Resources:

Can You Control Your Weight Podcast Episode

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Transcript

Welcome to Balance365 Life Radio, a podcast that delivers the honest conversations about food, fitness, weight, and wellness. I'm your host, Annie Brees along with Jennifer Campbell and Lauren Koski. We are personal trainers, nutritionists and founders of Balance365.

Together we coach thousands of women each day and are on a mission to help them feel healthy, happy, and confident in their bodies on their own terms. Join us here every week as we discuss hot topics pertaining to our physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing with amazing guests. Enjoy!

Welcome back to another episode of Balance365 Life Radio. It's Annie here, cofounder of Balance365 and I'm flying solo on today's episode. Today I want to debunk three exercise myths that I hear all the time. They're not only untrue, but they're flat out keeping a lot of women stuck spending time on stuff that doesn't even really matter, and I don't want that for you. So let's get going.

Myth number one, are ab exercises the key to a six pack? Sorry to say that all the crunches in the world won't get you a six pack. Crunches may be the most iconic core exercise out there and yes, proper core training and strengthening movements do have benefits, but unfortunately the idea of spot reduction or the ability to lose fat in targeted areas through exercise is a myth. In other words, all the crunches, the situps, the planks in the world won't magically melt fat from your stomach unless it's also paired with a caloric deficit.

If rock hard abs are on your wish list, you might want to also consider the other highly influential elements that can determine if you have visible abs like genetics and body composition. The truth is our genetics have a huge influence on whether or not we will have a visible six pack abs. While they may be possible for you, please remember that that doesn't mean it's possible for the next person to have them while also maintaining a healthy body weight. Even at my leanest, I've never had six pack abs. While we don't have control over our genetics and side note: if you want to hear more on how much control you have, check out our podcast on Can You Control Your Weight.

You can tackle changes to your body composition, but here's the kicker. You're most likely to succeed by addressing small, sustainable changes to your behavior while keeping in mind where individuals lose fat first is genetically driven. Swapping in veggies for chips and adding in a few strength training sessions per week may not be as impressive as an overnight overhaul, but studies have shown that the fewer habits you try to change at once, the more likely you are to succeed in the long term. So slow and steady wins this race.

Myth number two, sweating helps you burn more calories. Your workout left you drenched in sweat and that's a good thing, right? Or is it? Let's talk about sweating or lack of sweating really means in a workout. The bottom line is sweating is not a good indicator of an effective workout. Sweating is simply our way of preventing our bodies from overheating. When we exercise, our body temperature rises and as a response we produce sweat. As the sweat evaporates, our bodies cool down.

But how much we sweat can be highly individual and influenced by many factors including external temperatures, humidity, how many sweat glands you have and your current level of fitness. It can be easy to connect sweating with calorie burn, but really sweating is more a reflection of how warm our bodies are, not how hard we're working. So please don't forgo workouts that don't make you sweat.

I enjoy a good sweat session, yes, but I also enjoy deadlifting and when I'm strength training, I barely crack a sweat. Exercises like lifting and yoga may not result in puddles on the floor, but they have so many additional benefits that I don't want you to miss out on. So instead of worrying about the sweat, you might be better off keeping your focus on intention, the intensity and the enjoyment of your workout. And finally, our third and my favorite myth to debunk is "Does lifting weights make women big and bulky?"

We could probably spend a whole podcast on the theories behind this and as a trainer with over a decade of experience in the weight room, people ask me this all the time. The short answer is no, lifting heavy weights won't morph you into The Hulk overnight. The truth is women typically don't have the hormonal makeup required to gain muscle mass quickly, but really adding muscle mass is generally a lengthy and intentional process that requires years of consistent exercise and mindful nutritional choices.

What you won't ever hear me saying is "Don't worry, you won't get big" and that's because this response perpetuates the fear of getting big as if being big is something to avoid at all costs. Not to mention words like "big" and "bulky" are extremely subjective. Personally, I love big muscles, but I also believe that as women, we're the boss of our bodies.

We are in charge of how much muscle we prefer on ourselves individually. Whether you love visible muscles or not, lifting weights has many benefits that women can benefit from, like increased strength and bone density, enhanced mood, and reducing stress. And that I don't want you to miss out on. We just debunked three of the biggest exercise myths I hear most common, and if you want to debunk some more myths or continue this conversation I would love to see you inside our free private Facebook group. Healthy Habits Happy Moms. Thanks for joining.