Edit: The 12 Days of ChristMASS competition is over. Thanks for reading and be on the lookout for any future competitions.
Thinking more is better
Four sets is better than three sets so five sets is better than than four, right? Maybe or maybe not. When resistance training, you build up fitness but you also build up fatigue as well.
As you can see from the Fitness-Fatigue Model, more is certainly better, to a point. If you add too much volume, your progress will actually start to stall and you could possibly even regress.
Focusing only on cardio
Although cardio is an important aspect of getting lean, it is only one of multiple aspects. Another, often overlooked, aspect is resistance training. Gaining lean body mass drives your metabolic rate up, meaning your body needs more Calories to maintain it's weight.
Watching the scale too closely
As a beginner, the scale may or not be indicative of your progress. As a beginner, you have the unique ability to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time. Because of this, what happens on the scale can vary widely depending on your starting point. If you only have a few pounds to lose and you haven't lifted weights previously, your scale weight my shoot up drastically. It's highly likely that you've lost fat but gained more weight as muscle than you lost as fat. Conversely, if you are very overweight when starting, you will likely lose a lot of scale weight even though you are gaining significant muscle. If you're somewhere in the middle, your weight might not change at all.
Lifting too heavy too soon
I definitely fit in this category as a beginner. The amount of weight I could lift went up very rapidly but I also ended up having to rehab my shoulder because of it. It is very important to learn the proper form before throwing a ton of weight on the bar. Taking on fitness as a hobby is a marathon not a sprint (no pun intended). You need to make sure your joints stay healthy so that you can enjoy it for a long time to come.
Thinking in black and white
Just because one thing is good, does not mean the other option is bad. For example, high intensity cardio burns the most Calories so low intensity cardio must not be effective, which is not the case. They are simply different tools for different situations. High intensity cardio might burn more Calories but it also is a lot more fatiguing, which will impact your strength. What is the order of your goals? Do you care more about strength or fat loss?
One of the most prevalent places black and white thinking shows up is in nutrition in regards to "clean eating". There are very few foods that could be considered back in and of themselves. You must take into context the overall diet. For example, 80%-90% of the foods I eat consist of beef, chicken, fish, rice, veggies, and fruit; however, I also like to eat a bowl of ice cream a few times per week. I am not overweight and I am a relatively healthy person. I am certain that eliminating that one food item from my diet would make any noticable differences at all.
Thanks for reading! At the end of the 12 days of ChristMASS, I am giving away a $100 Amazon gift card! There are multiple ways to enter. The following things will give you one entry each:
- Like the Treadaway Training Faceboook page.
- Share the Treadaway Training Facebook post containing any 12 days of ChristMASS article.
- Like any 12 days of ChristMASS post on Facebook.
- Tag 3 people on any 12 days of ChristMASS Facebook post.
- Repost any 12 days of ChristMASS intagram post (and tag me so I can see it).
This gives you 5 possible entries each day with 1 additional entry for liking the Facebook Page. God Bless and I'll see you tomorrow for the 12 Days of ChristMASS Day 11!