At the very moment, when you’ll commit to exercise, you’ll hear a lot of different tips on what you should or shouldn’t do while training. Sometimes it’s hard to listen to all those opinions and decide which advice is right or wrong. Especcialy that some of them are really just opinions, noth truths. I took it step by step and speaking from the experience – here’s what I learned.
Myth #1: Protein is your new best friend
Actually, it was always your friend, just like magnesium, iron, zinc, all the other minerals, and vitamins. Our bodies are basically like the periodic table on steroids, we need all of those little things to keep a good health. You don’t have to freak out if you won’t eat protein bar while sipping protein shake and snacking on protein pills. Sure, our muscles need to grow on something but hear me when I say – protein is everywhere.
After I went vegan, one of the most common things I’ve heard was “so where do you get your protein from”. The same people didn’t worry that much when I was actually poisoning myself at McDonald’s but that’s the other story. I quickly learned that you’ll find protein in every vegan meal. Not everything has a lot of it and don’t have to. Greens, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes – balanced diet is the key, whether you exercise or not.
One thing you have to remember is that you shouldn’t compare grams of proteins based on grams of food (100g beef vs 100g beans or broccoli). Since you need to keep up with calories intake, that’s what you should focus on – 100 calories of beef vs 100 calories of beans of broccoli. Anyway, I’m vegan for over a year now and lack of protein was never my worry. Also, my men, who went vegan one month after me, did a blood test. His protein levels, calcium, cholesterol and the rest are in great condition.
When you work out and don’t try to lose weight you just need to eat more. More food means more protein intake and voila!
Myth #2: Running will ruin your joints
I’ve only heard this argument from people who actually don’t exercise, so I don’t give them any credibility. Jogging, just as any other form of exercise can be dangerous for your joints or bones if you already have health issues or when you’re obese. Of course, the first one is not always the case – in fact being active can help your knees, provide more stability and protect from further injuries.
Every time, when I’m in a local sports center, I meet different kids and adults who spend hours on training. Men and women twice my age are much healthier and in better shape than those around my age. I know people that are affraid of running, but unfortunatelly high cholesterol and possibility of getting diabetes don’t scare them away.
Keep in mind, I’m not writing about professional athletes. Only normal, moderate physical activity, which is necessary to maintain good health.
Years ago, I used to have enormous pain in my knees, especially during winter. At that time I didn’t really exercise, also my diet was pretty poor. Since I started running consistently, my overall health improved and knees finally stopped being a problem.
So, the truth is – running incorrectly can cause troubles.
Wrong foot placement, body posture, bad shoes, pushing over your limits and of course – extra weight. In the US around 70% of adults are overweight or obese and this is the real issue here. Knowing that we should be happy for all the runners, not discourage them.
Myth #3: Gloves are a bad idea
I was searching for some good workout gloves but instead of reviews on different brands, I got all the reasons why I shouldn’t buy them in a first place. That’s not what I asked for. I’m mostly into yoga and running, and slowly getting into calisthenics. In the beginning, exercising on the bar can cause pain. Hands get dry, skin tears up and leave callouses. That’s just something I would like to avoid.
If you don’t have enough strength to do a high number of repetitions, you probably won’t need gloves anyway. But if you still would like to wear them, then go for it. First of all, you should feel comfortable to perform at your best.
Myth #4: No cotton clothes
Basically, they say you should wear the right clothing that keeps the sweat away from your body. But I guess that’s not the point of exercising. No matter how professional, high-performance, moisture-wicking the fabric is, you still are going to sweat. Sometimes after step class or outdoor summer training, I looked like I was swimming in a pool. This is not the reason to worry about, it means my body is simply regulating the temperature.
Back to the cotton clothes – of course, they’re gonna get wet, just as those made from polyester. The thing is to choose when would you like to wear them. As for now, all of my sports bras are made from polyester and I prefer more compression in leggings when I run. On the other hand, cotton is perfect for yoga. Most of my shirts or crop tops are also made from natural fabric and I really like running in them (tip: search for the organic cotton to avoid all those chemicals).
On the top of that, I have to add – I don’t really like polyester. It’s nothing more than just a plastic in another form. It has some pros but the main issue is – it’s harmful both to the environment and your body. Plastic shirts may dry faster, although toxins won’t ever dry away.
As for the future, I’m going to replace polyester activewear with harmless, eco-friendly clothes.
Myth #5: Cardio is the worst
Trends affect every part of our lives, so exercising is no exception. Today it’s all about weight lifting and booty growing, but if the next Kim Kardashian is going to be less curvy, this will probably change. Now, you’ll hear you shouldn’t be afraid to lift some weights (which is true) and cardio will be just the waste of time (not true). I say, what just don’t do both?
Sometimes it’s even hard to draw a line between aerobic and anaerobic. Anyhow, the most important thing is to always be active. If you don’t enjoy lifting to the point when you don’t want to do it anymore, then don’t listen to any “experts” and go swimming or skateborading.
Obviously, in history, there were maybe not the best forms of exercising like the Trim Twist, although highly popular Zumba was pretty fun. In the end, it doesn’t matter which sport you’re choosing, be persistent and take care of your body.
Myth #6: Don’t wear makeup
It’s one of the things girls hear. Not necessarily a few tips on how to increase the results of training, what to eat, how to exercise properly. Suddenly, some people will be all against makeup.
And I’ll say – you do you boo.
Of course, if you’re afraid to sweat because you wear a ton of mascara, lip gloss, basically – full face contour, it may not make any sense. But if wearing makeup makes you more confident then why not? Without any foundation, you may be worried about your look instead of focusing on a training. This may be a good moment to say you should feel pretty with or without makeup but the reality is – easier said than done.
For a long time I used to train with “no makeup makeup” and it took me a while before I felt secure enough to think “screw it, I just want to go and run”.
Bottom line – no myths should stop you from training
Overthinking makes things way more complicated than they should be, including exercise. It’s good to be somehow prepared but don’t spend too much thinking about every little detail – should you eat those extra nuts and bananas or wear tight leggings, because it seems like everyone does it? With time you’ll learn to listen to your body and see for yourself what’s working.
It’s great to take advice, I’m all for it! But too much information, especially at the beginning, may be overwhelming. I’m still one of those people who just don’t like counting macros, however, it doesn’t mean I’m not trying my best. Every day I choose different plant-based foods and feel better than ever. Weight shows I’m not starving or overeating and my body is getting nicely toned. I’m good.
The point is to focus on building healthy habits, no matter of any myths or legends.