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Fitness myths, Part 2

"Exercising safely"
By: James BarramedaFitness myths, Part 2

  • When you feel you have over exercised, that’s when you stop training. One of the biggest mistakes beginners commit is exercising too much too soon. Always start light, slow, and short, then gradually increase the intensity and duration as you progress in fitness level later on.
  • Sit-ups and crunches will get rid of your belly fat. Doing abs crunches and sit-ups help strengthen your midsection, but it cannot magically dissolve your belly bulge. You cannot choose areas where you’d like to burn fat with exercise. You have to work on lessening your overall body fat and to engage in a full fitness routine that involves your entire body.
  • Running on a treadmill cushions your knees better than running on the road. The stress that running brings on your joints is brought by your body weight regardless if you’re running on a treadmill or on asphalt. Certain body types like women with wide hips may even suffer further stress on their joints if they keep running as a form of sport. Alternate running with other cardio exercises such as cycling, swimming, using an elliptical machine, etc.
  • Yoga is the safest type of fitness program you can get into. Yoga has been a very versatile form of exercise catering to people of various age groups and fitness levels. But without proper supervision of a trained instructor, yoga may cause serious injuries by imitating poses and techniques without proper body conditioning. It is recommended that you seek medical clearance from your doctor before you try it out.
  • Women will get bulky from lifting weights. You cannot get as big and bulky as those female gladiators on TV because your body does not produce enough testosterone. The average male naturally produces 10 times more testosterone than the average female. You’d have to take hormonal injections and steroids repeatedly while on strict weight training to achieve a muscular physique.
  • Machines are safer and better than free weights. Machines can be dangerous if not adjusted properly for the person’s height and weight. These machines can pose an equally high risk of injury as with using free weights or other non-machine fitness equipment. Exercise machines actually force you into a certain plane of motion that isn’t natural. Performing an abdominal workout using a machine, for example, can rob you of the opportunity to exercise and train other stabilizing muscles that are supposed to help keep your balance. So, when you try performing “real world” tasks like lifting furniture or pushing your car, you may end up having a difficult time supporting yourself.
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