Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Myth number 3) To tone up I need to do lots of reps with a light weight :

Myth number 3) To tone up I need to do lots of reps with a light weight
The lovely Jane Fonda did wonders by getting people exercising, but she also set us back years by promoting "the burn" and super-high reps for toning and inch loss. That burning you feel when you are exercising is not fat melting away, it is Lactic Acid being produced by your muscles as they run out of oxygen. Lactic acid does not cause spot reduction of body fat. If super high reps caused spot reduction of body fat, people who eat lots and often would have thin faces from all that chewing! Spot reduction is a super-sized myth! Fat stores will disappear globally, not locally. It's cruel but it's the truth. Some one once asked me "what's the best exercise to make my stomach thinner?" I replied "Push your self away from the dining table sooner". Probably not the answer they were seeking, but it's a painful truth very few exercisers/dieters ever grasp.

The best (in fact only) was to improve the condition of a muscle or muscle group is to overload it - in other words ask it to do more work than usual. This means work it harder, not longer. Think about it. You do 30 side leg lifts to tone your glutes (your butt). When that gets easier, you do 35, then 40 and so on. After a few months you are doing 5 sets of 50 per leg and your entire exercise routine consists of nothing but side lying leg lifts because that's all you have time for. Sounds like madness doesn't it? Surely, it would be better to increase the workload, overload the muscles more and not have to spend an hour on the same exercise? To improve the condition of a muscle, it must be exposed to progressive overload i.e. asked to do more than it's used to on a regular basis. Only then will it we see the adaptation (increase in tone) we are seeking.

A rep count of 20 or less is best in terms of effect and training time economy. Any higher than that and really it's just a waste of your valuable time. This 20 rep rule applies to all muscle groups, including abdominals. Super high reps do nothing but waste time. Find ways to make exercises harder rather than do hundreds of unnecessarily time wasting reps.

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