5 Facts That Nobody Told You About Fitness


Fitness can be full of surprises. Not all fitness tips are the same, and sometimes they contradict each other outright. But who hasn’t heard that you need to drink eight glasses of water a day or that chocolate is good for you? This guide will debunk some common fitness myths and reveal some surprising truths about how your body works, what it needs to stay healthy, and how to eat right.

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1. FACT: Calories in beverages do count!

You’ve probably noticed that calories on nutrition labels include those from solid foods and liquids alike. This makes sense; if you consume more than 1,000 calories in either form, you’ve done enough damage (if not eaten well, in general, The number of liquid calories in a food or beverage can vary greatly, and it’s easy to assume that because they come from a drink, you won’t gain weight. However, whether these calories are in the form of juice or soda makes no difference at all to your waistline. Consuming calories is consuming calories.

2. FACT: You don’t have to eat breakfast to lose weight

This myth probably comes from the fact that many people who start exercising for weight loss simply do not feel hungry first thing in the morning. This is true for everyone—not just dieters. It doesn’t matter if you’re fasting beforehand; if you’re not hungry when it’s time to eat, then you shouldn’t force yourself to eat. Your body will adjust after about three weeks.

3. FACT: Your body can’t “go into starvation mode”

A lot of people believe that the body stops burning fat when it doesn’t get food regularly, but this is just not true. While your metabolism will slow down if you don’t eat regularly, it does not decrease to such an extent that your body will begin converting its own muscles and organs into energy in order to sustain itself. This belief has been debunked by many sources, including Men’s Health, U.S. News & World Report, and The Huffington Post. If you want to lose weight and you’re worried about going into starvation mode, do three things: Eat. Don’t starve yourself thinking that you’ll magically start losing weight; that approach has failed you in the past. Slow down. Ease off on the eating so that you don’t feel bloated and miserable, but don’t cut yourself off. Keep exercising through any weight-loss plateau you might experience.

4. FACT: You can eat junk food now and then if your diet is generally healthy/​balanced

There’s nothing wrong with indulging occasionally, but eating junk food/​fast food all the time will put a strain on your body that may lead to health problems later on. If you want to enjoy some ice cream or potato chips now and then, just keep it under control—and make sure they’re not replacing more nutritious foods for most of the time. A little goes a long way; remember that even though you might get full eating one donut, it’s still just one donut.

5. FACT: There are NO foods that speed up your metabolism

Unfortunately, the myth that some specific foods cause an increase in metabolic rate is not true. While some foods may be more likely to lead to weight loss because of their nutrient content, this has nothing to do with calorie expenditure. If you eat a healthy diet including fresh produce and lean protein sources while limiting processed carbohydrates, you’ll see results. The fat-burning zone on exercise equipment comes from the idea that exercising at a constant pace will expend more calories than constantly changing speeds; however, aerobic exercises actually burn fewer calories per minute when performed at faster paces. This is why interval training is so popular—it alternates between high-intensity workouts and low-intensity intervals to maximize caloric expenditure.

Conclusion

The best way to lose weight is to monitor your calorie intake, stay active throughout the day, eat well-balanced meals and snacks, and maintain your aerobic fitness. You don’t have to spend hours in the gym every day or avoid specific foods if you want to drop fat—you just have to adjust your mindset so that you can be healthy without being fanatical.

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