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True or False – Nine Classic Fitness Nutrition Myths

Gyms in the UK are busier than ever – with data showing that gym members are actually visiting the gym more than they did pre-pandemic.

But for those looking to work towards a healthier, leaner body it can be difficult to know where to start.

Performance Meals worked with personal trainer, nutritionist and owner of Peak Health, Paul Crouch, to dispel some classic myths around health, fitness and nutrition.

Fitness myths 1

One:

“The best time to work out is first thing in the morning, there is no point at any other time of day!”

True or false?

False. Paul says: “There is no right time to work out, as long as you’re consistent and regular, so fit in gym or home workout sessions at a time that works best for you.”

Two:

“Working out on an empty stomach helps you lose weight.”

True or false?

This one isn’t quite as simple. Paul explains: “Sometimes it is best to eat beforehand to maximise your workout. However, methods such as intermittent fasting mean that the body can adapt to burning fat as fuel.”

Eating protein before a workout can help prevent muscle damage whilst promoting recovery. Anyone looking to try intermittent fasting is advised to seek guidance from a professional.

Fitness myths 8

Three:

“You can target fat burn to a specific part of your body.”

True or false?

“Often referred to as ‘spot reducing’, this myth is false,” Paul confirms.

When exercising, stored fats that the body can use for energy can come from anywhere in the body, rather than the specific area you’re working.

Four:

“Eating late in the evening makes it harder to lose weight.”

True or false?

“This depends on what you eat,” says Paul.

“If your meal is more protein bias, this will not store as fat and will benefit recovery.”

Five:

“You need a low-carb diet to lose weight.”

True or false?

False.

Paul says: “Whilst simple carbs such white pasta and white bread often have added sugars, complex carbohydrates like potatoes and whole grains contain fibre and other nutrients that don’t cause the same spikes and dips. It is complex carbohydrates that should be eaten as part of a healthy, balanced diet.”

Six:

“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.”

True or false?

False. Paul confirms: “All meals are important, and timing is dependent on your goal. Intermitting fasting, for example, means that breakfast is skipped but results are still achieved.”

Seven:

“You can build muscle and lose fat at the same time.”

True or false?

Paul says: “Building muscle can increase metabolism which will help burn fat, however that’s a process which takes time to develop. You do not simply build muscle and burn fat!”

Eight:

“Keto is the best diet for fat loss.”

True or false

False. Paul confirms: “Following a controlled eating protocol and regular exercise are the most effective weight loss tool.”

Nine:

“If you’re not sore after a workout, you’re not trying hard enough.”

Reality

False!

“Not feeling sore doesn’t mean you haven’t had a good workout. Feeling sore is a sign that you need a recovery day before your next session and ignoring these signs can lead to being overtrained.”