Don’t Believe These 15 Common Misconceptions Of Fitness Myths During Bodybuilding

Whether it’s simple fear of being judged or something more pernicious, many would-be gym goers hold themselves back with limiting beliefs.

Men’s Health Fitness Council is here to clear up those misconceptions and help your clients start their fitness journey with confidence. Here are 15 gym myths your clients shouldn’t believe:

  1. ‘Spot Reduction Works’

Trying to achieve a flat stomach just by doing sit-ups every day is the perfect example of a training misconception called spot reduction. This means training a specific part of your body to lose weight in that area. If your clients really want to try to lose fat around their stomachs, a mix of resistance training and high-intensity aerobic exercise, along with a healthy diet, is the best way to go. – Ryan Swift, MYOS Media

  1. ‘Heavy Weights Make You Bulk Up’

Many clients have a fear of lifting heavy weights because they don’t want to bulk up. What they don’t realize is that lifting with weights that challenge you actually jump-starts your metabolism, gets your heart rate up, and helps build lean muscle mass, which enables you to burn more calories all day long. – Alison Kreideweis, Empire Tri Club

  1. ‘You Have to Work Out Five Days a Week’

Most people think they need to work out five days a week because that’s what they’ve always been told. Rather than burning out quickly, spend more time with your family and less time in the gym. As a beginner, do the least amount of work to get the biggest benefits. Start with two days a week and see how your results look. You can always add more days if needed. – Ben Dearman, KDR Fitness

  1. ‘The Gym Will Give Me Coaching and Guidance’

Most people think the gym is there to provide them with coaching and guidance. That’s not what you’re paying for at a typical low-dollar-per-month facility. You’re paying for access to equipment and amenities, not coaching and personalized guidance. Approach the gym as a place that has all the tools you could ever want, but it’s a place where you’ll have to learn how to use them unless you hire a pro. – Jesse Jackson, Inner Strength Fitness

  1. ‘You Can Build Muscle and Lose Fat at the Same Time’

Unfortunately, it’s impossible to build muscle and lose fat simultaneously. In order to build muscle, you need to consume more calories than what you burn. In order to lose fat, you need to consume fewer calories than what you burn. If you stay in the middle, you’ll maintain your current shape. Remember your end goal and commit to either losing weight or gaining muscle. – Nicko Dumadaug, Fitness For Young Professionals

  1. ‘I Need to Increase My Protein Intake’

When I get a new client, I immediately investigate their diet. The biggest and most common mistake is to increase your protein intake. In order to get the body type you want, you have to understand how your body turns food into energy. Make sure you understand the different types of protein drinks on the market — from casein to whey to whey isolates — before indulging. – Robert Fusco,

  1. ‘Cardio Alone Will Make Me Lose Weight’

Many newcomers to a gym only hit up the cardio machines because they have a Fitbit or the cardio machines count calories. Doing insane amounts of cardio and not eating only results in a person burning muscle mass for energy instead of burning fat. It’s important to educate newcomers about proper weight training. – Michael Fontana, Desert Lotus Power Fitness

  1. ‘Constantly Switching Workouts Will Help My Progress’

The biggest misconception is the idea that progress is made through constantly switching up workouts to try to cause “muscle confusion.” It may help some people prevent boredom, but ultimately, progress is built upon progressive overload, not constant variety. Training specific movements over a period of time and strategically increasing intensity or volume leads to progress. – Christopher Carreiro, Aum Training Center

  1. ‘Lifting Weights Always Causes Intense Soreness’

Many clients are intimidated to return to the gym to lift weights because they do not like the sore feeling that comes the next day. Since they rarely lift weights, they think this always happens. I remind them that the soreness is temporary and will never be that bad ever again for as long as they keep going. It becomes an acquired sense of accomplishment that they will learn to love. – Michael Maverick, MaverickMuscle.US

  1. ‘I Can Have Cheat Days’

One of the most well-known misconceptions is the infamous “cheat day.” Everyone knows about it, and most work hard just for that one day a week that they can throw their nutritional program out the window.  – Lee Jimenez, Body Battle Fitness

  1. ‘People Will Judge Me’

First of all, anyone who judges you for doing the best you can with what you’ve got is irrelevant. Focus on yourself and set a potent goal. Figure out what it’s going to take to reach your goal, develop a plan, visualize the successful completion of that goal, and never look back or worry what others may think. – Jordan Paris, Jordan Paris Health

  1. ‘You Only Have to Train Each Body Part Once a Week’

Your body gains muscle and develops faster by doing something more than just once a week. Take your regular workouts and divide them into two separate days each week. Do what you would normally do, but divide the workout and add one more set each day. You’ll get more volume of weight and have less rest days between body parts. – Troy Beauregard, RHP Training Centre

  1. ‘I Should Be Able to Lose a Lot of Weight Quickly’

There are several current trends based on The Biggest Loser where people think losing a ton of weight over a short period of time is healthy, easy, and safe. I explain to people that you can’t quit your job, have a personal chef, and be monitored 24 hours a day. Our goal as trainers is to educate people about safe, long-term results within an optimal time frame. – Greg Johnson, Varimax Fitness

  1. ‘You Only Need a Few Fitness Sessions with a Professional’

Some new clients believe that I can impart all of my years of knowledge on them in a few sessions and then they’ll no longer need help. I always explain that I can give them some basics to stay safe and get them started but that they will need to advance their program eventually. – Jaime Anton, Record Change Fitness

  1. ‘Only High-Intensity Workouts Are Effective’

While there are many benefits to high-intensity training, it’s not the only way you should train. Doing high-intensity training too often can cause burnout and injury as you risk giving your body insufficient recovery time. Lower-intensity workouts can allow the body to actively recover while still burning calories and increasing fitness. This puts you in a better position to make exercise a habit.