Be Leary of Fitness Gimmicks
So this is that time of
year when people set out to make changes and better their lives. Many of
these changes revolve around getting in better shape, eating better,
and weight loss in general. The problem is that when we begin our search
it often leads to so many different options that frankly our heads can
spin! Do we go with Zumba or lift weights? Is Yoga enough to lose
There are certainly many
different paths one can take to go about getting in better shape. This
can range from weight training to running to taking group exercise
classes at your local gym. It’s also true that eventually you will have
to add in missing pieces to your exercise regiment to fight off plateaus
and take yourself to the next level. For example, if you’ve only been
running and have stopped losing weight maybe it’s time to add some
resistance training in as well, but as far as getting started a lot of
activities will suffice. But the truth of the matter is
that fitness is multi-faceted and needs to be approached in the best way
for you to personally succeed and stay motivated.
Our focus here, however,
is where many run into problems, and that is when they allow themselves
to get caught up in the hype of some exercise program or piece of
equipment that promises to get them to the shape they want super fast.
Us seasoned vets simply shake our heads when we see a commercial for
some new ground-breaking ab-sculpting workout that is sure to give you a
six pack in three weeks. Unfortunately most hyped items and programs
are just that – hype. Marketing companies are good at their job, they
want you to believe that their offering is the only answer you need.
While we won’t say that everything new is a gimmick, there are some
pretty easy signs to tell.
Here are some tips for spotting a phony:
- Does it look too good to be true? Are they showing
incredibly dramatic results in short periods of time? Are they
promising that you can’t fail? Do you find yourself getting overly
excited while gaining information? Chances are if it sounds too good it
is too good.
- Does it promise to specifically focus on one body part?
Unfortunately you are not going to get a six-pack by wearing a shock
belt or doing an hour-long ab class every day. While there may be some
benefit to the muscles worked we all know you can’t spot reduce. You
have to have other areas in sync to start seeing those muscle come
- Do they claim it will work for everyone? Most of
the time a program or class really isn’t one-size-fits all like they may
advertise. Additionally many programs may include moves that are
advanced for even seasoned exercisers and without proper instruction or
supervision could cause injury! You know your body better than the
instructor or DVD host.
- Do they mention diet or cardio? A lot of times,
while the results may be real, they likely didn’t come strictly from the
program or equipment. These individuals were also strict with their
eating and other exercise to ensure they burned enough calories to lose
that weight. Additionally any supplement or product claiming you can get
toned without any effort should be a HUGE RED FLAG!
- What does the real world have to say? In an age
where no one can hide on the internet, finding real reviews should be
easy. Whether it’s a local studio or at-home workout program you should
be able to find real experiences from real people. If not maybe it’s too
new to be vetted.
What it all boils down
to is that fitness doesn’t have to be complicated, but it is a process.
Use the KISS method (keep it simple stupid) to build your plan. There is
nothing wrong with starting off slow. Another reason many fall off the
fitness wagon early in the year is due to going too hard too fast and
burning out quickly. Remember that every good fitness regimen will
include the following aspects:
- Cardiovascular Training
- Resistance Training
- Nutritional Component
If you make an effort to
increase your performance in each category you are certain to have
success. There may be bumps along the way and you may need to change
things up from time to time, but like we said, it’s a process. We hope
2015 is a great year for you and your health. Remember be dedicated to
the processes and make fitness a part of your lifestyle and you can’t