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[Image: Training Myths]

Training Myths

Training Myths -Sandra (BA Kin)    
  1. Women will get Huge/Jacked/Very Muscular if they Weight Train It is a common misconception that women who lift weights or strength train get huge bulging muscles or get bulky. That female body builder which you see on TV or in a magazine has been training for years, taking supplements and probably steroids to look like that. Don't be fooled, strengthen training makes your muscles strong but not necessarily bigger. Besides, statistically women generally produce a fraction of Testosterone compared to males. Testosterone, is the primary anabolic hormone produced by the body required to build muscles. If you eat to get bulky, you will get bulky. If you eat to be lean and toned, you will be lean and toned.  
  2. Squatting below Parallel is harmful for the knees This is probably one of the most persistent myths of all time. From the dawn of time & in the non air conditioned world human beings have been squatting below parallel and have never reported any knee pain or injury. On the contrary when a person squats below parallel he/she recruits more Glute and Hamstring than quad to help distribute the load with more mechanical advantage. Squatting above parallel to safe guard the knees generally results in the weight being displaced forward to the anterior muscles and actually puts more tension around the knee. Remember, If done with faulty movement patterns and bad form any exercise can injure you. Secondly, if you are injured or in rehab, your range of motion may not permit you to squat below parallel so speak with your Specialist first. 
  3. The Best Exercise to build Core Strength are Sit-ups & Crunches A famous Strength & Conditioning Coach actually tested muscle firing and activation amongst various exercises with the help of an EMG (Electromyography is a diagnostic technique which is used to evaluate the electrical activity in Muscles) the results he found were: The exercises that activated the Core the most were:(in order of activation)
  1. Squat
  2. Pullup
  3. Deadlift
  4. Overhead Press
  5. Bench Press
  6. Dip
  7. Lunge
  8. Plank  Crunches & Situps came a lot lower. So no,  crunches and Situps are not the best way to get a strong core. 
  1. The Deadlift is a Back Exercise Although the Deadlift utilizes the Back muscles to stabilize it is primarily a HIP HINGE movement and the primary HIP EXTENSORS are the Glutes, Hamstrings and Erector Spinae. The percentage of muscle recruitment are roughly:Glutes 45%Hamstrings 30%Erector Spinae & Other Core Muscles 15%Back & Arms 10% 
  2. Steady State Cardio is the Best way to lose Body Fat Yes, Steady State Cardio will help you lose 'weight' but from both Fat and Muscles together. As most people know, to look great and have optimum health you need to hold on to every ounce of muscle you have. So although Steady State Cardio does burn Fat, HIIT training for shorter periods actually relatively burns more Body Fat & Saves Muscle.Think Marathon Runner vs Sprinter 
  3. Static Stretching should be done before the workout Think Cold Rubber Band, if you stretch a cold rubber band it will most definitely snap. Almost the same goes for muscles. If you stretch out your muscles statically for periods of time before a workout you may end up putting extra pressure on your joint or even tearing a muscle. When beginning your workout it is a better idea to get the blood flowing & perform a few dynamic stretches along with some mobility drills. 
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[Image: Understanding Nutrition]

Understanding Nutrition

Article 1 : Nutrition - Andy Lark   *Note-Over the last decade I have learnt from the best minds in the business and I quote them very so often in my articles. I do not wish to plagiarize anyone's work or quotes.

    If Exercise is the lock then Nutrition is the key. One of the great coaches of our time had said that. With a massive amount of information from the Internet, in magazines and impromptu gurus, it has become relatively difficult to decipher the holy grail of nutrition. I do not claim to be the end all be all of the fitness industry but over my years of experience and certifications I have narrowed down the basics of good nutrition relating to your training goal to a few key guidelines.  

With the exponential growth in population comes a demand for fast quickly grown food to supply the masses. Processed, chemically laden & nutrient deficient foods have hit the shelves with promises of Health & Happiness. The human genome hasn't evolved more than 0.02% which means our ability to digest and absorb nutrients from foods hasn't really changed much. In order the achieve the best results with your Health & Fitness you must ensure the keep the Basics Simple !!  

Eat Nutrient Dense Foods
Your cells crave good nutrition and cell health is primary for good health. Supply your cells with the best raw material, your health and fitness will reach its true potential. Many people focus on the Macronutrients – Carbs, Fats & Protein, and very few focus on the Micronutrients – Vitamins & Minerals. Along with a macronutrient balance ensure your diet has an abundant amount of Vitamins and Minerals from natural sources. Some great avenues of nourishment are: (1)   A variety of Fruits, especially thin skinned fruits like Berries, Pears, Apples, Peaches, etc (2)   Multi coloured Vegetables, especially Kale, Celery, Parsley, Carrots, Red Peppers & Chilly (3)   Seasoning, Himalayan Pink Salt, Black & Cayenne Pepper, Turmeric, Curcumin, Cinnamon. *Ensure that the sources of Fruits and Vegetables are clean and pure, free of insecticides & pesticides. Shopping from your local farmers would be a great tip and trip.  

Eat Enough Protein – From Good Sources
Regardless of whether your goals are Fat Loss, Maintenance, Muscle gain, Sports Specific or even Rehab the most important nutrient to achieve your training goal is Protein. Many people overlook the fact that the most important functions of protein are Neurotransmitter production, Liver detoxification, used as raw materials in RNA, DNA & Hormone production. Protein is also necessary for growth of new cells or aka the building block or muscle. Hence, ensuring that we get an adequate amount of ‘Complete’ protein in our diets is of paramount importance. I will not dwell on Complete vs Incomplete Protein in this article (but stay tuned for an article on that soon). Some great avenues for nourishment are: (1)   Animal or Bird Protein (Hormone Free, Organic, Grass or Grain respective of the source) (2)   Fish (Wild Atlantic Salmon, Orange Roughy, Cod, etc.) (3)   Quinoa    

Get your Fats from Good Sources
Media these days hypes up Fat Free products, which is good in a way but it also changes the perception of the public. For instance, fat is from eating a bag of Doritos is bad for you but fat from Cheese (Real Cheese) is not bad – Notice I say ‘Real Cheese’ as many people buy they're cheese from the local supermarket based on how cheap it is, that isn't real cheese (Article to come). Did you know that the cell walls of your cells are made up of Fat, and the type of fat will dictate the health of your cells. Think about it, the more junk or cheap the fat is the unhealthier the cell wall, reducing transportation of nutrients and toxins in and out of them. Think good fats my friends, here are some excellent sources of good fats:   (1)   Avocados (2)   Eggs (3)   Nuts (4)   Coconut Oil (5)   Wild Alaskan Salmon (6)   Omega 3 Fish Oils   Limit your Sugar Intake Many of us don't realize but sugar is in almost everything, from fruits to yogurt and yes Oatmeal is Sugar(or eventually it does turn into sugar). Many of us don't realize but we are very insulin resistant(the amount of sugar in our blood required to stimulate the release of insulin is high)  so the body can't efficiently make use of the sugar it receives and our systems become toxic. A very famous Strength and Conditioning Coach once said that it's not fat that makes us fat but carbs that drives insulin that makes us fat !! Some key points you can remember when preparing your meals for the day are: (1)   Use good sources of Carbs-Quinoa, Wild Rice, Thin Skinned Fruits (2)   Avoid Processed Carbs-White Polished Rice, Bread, Sugary Drinks labelled as Fruit Juices or High Energy Drinks (3)   Do your research on the Glycemic Index and choose your foods accordingly  

Read & Understand the Food Labels
I have had countless people speak to me misunderstanding the macronutrient content in many foods. For example: Yes, I get enough protein because I eat Nuts. Now what they don't know is that nuts are primarily Fat-Good Fat and the protein content in them is negligible. Another example is: Yes, I eat Quinoa which is packed with protein. Now what they don't realize is that Quinoa is primarily Carbohydrates-Complex Carbs. I order to take in the amount of protein you would get from 1 chicken breast you would need to eat about a cup and a half of Quinoa, which essentially means your eating a heck of a lot of carbs along with the protein.   All foods have they're nutrition content/macronutrient count on the back of the pack. The simple trick is to read the Carbs, Protein, Fat content and whichever is the highest is what it's most dense in. Make wise choices my friends.    

To recap everything we have talked about today:
1.     Eat Natural Food that's are packed with Vitamins, Minerals and Phytonutrients.
2.     No matter what your goals, ensure you are getting enough Protein in your diet.
3.     Not all fats are bad, do your research and reach for Fats from good sources.
4.     Choose Naturally occurring good sources of Carbs, because that's what's making you Fat
5.     Read your Food Labels !!   Thanks for reading this, please look out for my bids. I will definitely get you to your goals!!
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