Dispelling Work-Out Myths

Myth #1: Longer Workouts = Better Workouts
With most goals exercise quality is more important than quantity. Smart exercise will always take precedent over long exercise. Each workout has 2 primary variables: intensity and duration. Try to workout at a certain intensity so the duration is limited.
Not controlling your workout intensity and spending too much time in the gym is actually bad for your body because your body will produce excess stress hormones which will hinder the recovery process.

Myth #2 Only Morning Workouts Are Effective
Successful workout routines are built around consistency, focus and intensity. Some people can’t get motivated in the morning and others are too burned out after work. So pick a time that’s right for you.

Myth #3 Muscle Soreness = Results (I hear THIS ALL THE TIME!)
Many people judge their previous workout by muscle soreness which follows and equate it with having a good workout. Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) usually occurs within 24-48 hours after a workout and depends on numerous factors including, state of training, length of workout, phase of training, amount of rest and nutrition.
Muscle soreness is due to inflammation and micro-damage of muscle cells.
People with weight loss/toning goals should take note that excess muscle soreness most likely means they are overtraining, especially with a lower-caloric diet.

Myth #4 Doing crunches and ab workouts will get rid of belly fat!
Fact: You can do crunches till you pass out, and you still might not get a six-pack. Why? If you have a high percentage of body fat, your abs will be covered with — you guessed it — fat. And no, doing ab exercises won’t necessarily make you lose that belly fat, either. The truth is, you can’t spot-train (otherwise, wouldn’t we all be running around with flat stomachs and slim thighs?). In order to get visibly toned abs, you have to first reduce your overall body fat, which means plenty of cardio, coupled with strength training for faster results.

Myth #5 Lifting weights will make you look bulky
Ladies especially fear this! Strength training will help you lose weight faster and keep it off in the long run. If you also do cardio, it’ll help you retain muscle as you drop fat, as well as prevent your metabolism from slowing. So don’t focus all your efforts on the elliptical machine — incorporating 2-3 weight lifting sessions a week could help you achieve your ultimate goal of being lean and fit!

Any questions or topics you’d like me to cover, feel free to email me at bodyshop@antidotemag.com


Elisha Rubenstein PFT, CET, CPAFLA, Ex.Phys. Personal Trainer & Nutrition Specialist. Published Fitness Expert & Lifestyle Coach CTV Morning Ottawa Fitness Expert Health & Fitness Columnist Antidote Magazine.