Here are more weight loss myths dispelled to save you from wasting your time worrying about unnecessary things.
To read my initial list of weight loss myths, check out part 1.
Myth 1: You Can Spot Reduce Body Fat
Fact: Spot reduction refers to the fallacy that fat can be targeted for reduction from a specific area of the body and that it can be achieved through exercise of specific muscles in the desired area.
Studies largely show that it is not possible to reduce fat in one area by exercising that body part alone. Instead, fat is lost from the entire body as a result of diet and regular exercise.
The location of fat loss cannot be directed or controlled. It is entirely up to your genetics that determine the rate and area of fat loss.
Myth 2: The Treadmill Accurately Counts Calories Burned
Fact: If you enter your weight before you start your treadmill run, the calories burned count is really just a rough estimate and will never be completely accurate.
Cardio machines such as treadmills use standard formulas to figure out the amount of calories burned. But the calculations don’t take into account important factors other than weight, such as body fat percentage and fitness level.
If a 160-pound woman with 35% body fat and a 160-pound woman with 20% body fat are both running at a 10:00/mile pace, the treadmill will display the same amount of calories burned. However, the woman with the lower body fat and more muscle mass is actually burning more calories.
Treadmills also don’t take your form and running efficiency into account. New runners will usually burn more calories than more experienced runners running the same pace and distance.
Myth 3: The Importance of the Number on the Weight Scale
Fact: Fortunately the scale reading is only a number. Like all pieces of data, this number may or may not be an accurate reflection of whether or not you are losing fat.
There are a few things that factor into weight variance, such as glycogen store levels, bloating, dehydration etc.
Ignore the scale. The weight displayed has little to do with your body fat and fitness levels. Rather focus on the mirror and gauge progress based on what you see.
Myth 4: Fat Burns Only Within the Target Fat Burn Zone
Fact: The truth is at best, the fat burning zone is very misleading. The fat burning zone was conceived because at lower exercise intensities more fat is burned relative to glycogen.
However this doesn’t negative the fact that exercise at higher intensities still burn a higher volume of fat stores – even though the ratio of fat to glycogen burn is lesser compared to exercise at lower intensities.
At 50% of your max heart rate, your body burns a ratio of 60% fat to 40% glycogen. At 75% of your max heart rate, the ratio is 35% to 65%, and at even higher intensities, the ratio is even lower.
Thanks for reading!
About the author:
Wilfred Paul is an Exercise Physiologist, PT & Weight Loss Consultant with a passion for helping people actualize their health & fitness goals. He is also a content writer for Forbes, Medical Daily & The Independent UK.