There is a lot of myths and misinformation that are common in the fitness industry. Different people have false opinions about what is supposedly the best way to lose fat, to be lean and healthy.

These myths have been passed down over the years and have refused to away despite the increased knowledge and awareness among fitness enthusiasts.  They hold back from achieving your full potential and they make your workouts frustrating and with no tangible results.

Here is a list of the 4 most common myths in the industry.  Read the list and get rid of them if you still believe in them.

1. Relying on Dieting for weight loss

Would you rather workout and sweat it out or would you prefer to go on a diet to shed that extra flab?  This will depend on your personality on whether you like shortcuts or putting in the necessary effort.

Some people prefer to cut down calories than go through tough workouts to burn fat. Others, on the other hand, love the feeling of pushing themselves and enjoy the rush of endorphins they get after a tough workout.

When you go on a diet, you lose a lot of water weight. This gives you a false sense of success thinking you are making progress. On the contrary, the reduction on caloric intake slows down your metabolism forcing your body to go into starvation mode.

This puts your body under extreme stress because it’s not functioning normally. Eventually, you revert back to your normal way of eating and end up putting back on the weight that you had lost plus some more.

For lasting weight loss, eat lean unprocessed foods combined with regular exercise.

2. Focusing on cardio only

If you’re trying to lose weight, you will without fail fall into two groups of people. Those who swear by cardio and those prefer to lift weights only.

Cardio lovers enjoy taking part in activities such as aerobics, swimming, running, cycling, and dancing. When you walk into any gym, you can clearly see this distinction. The cardio room will be mostly occupied by ladies whereas the strength room will be packed with sweating and panting men.

It is true that cardio is king for burning calories. However, your body quickly adapts to the cardio, and the end result is that you remain the same despite training hard.

The biggest challenge that I encounter in my work as a Personal Trainer is educating my female clients that cardio is not the ultimate solution. A proper and balanced program must include weight training to achieve and sustain lasting weight loss. Apart from losing fat, weight training works to improve your bone health and overall strength.

If your goal is to lose weight, ensure you balance your exercise program to incorporate cardiovascular exercises, resistance training, and flexibility.

3. Spot reduction

On many occasions, I have had clients who walk up to me and say “I want to lose only my tummy but not my hips”  I wish this was possible but unfortunately it’s not. Each one of us has a body structure that we tend to maintain regardless of our size. If anyone tells you that they are going to assist you to tone up those trouble spots while leaving the rest of the body intact, they are simply taking you for a ride.

If you spent all your time in the world doing sit-ups and leg-raises to get those flash board abs, at best you will end up with strong abdominal muscles which are hidden beneath the flab and at worst you will end up with a weak and vulnerable back. To really attack the fat around your midsection, you need a regular program of whole body workouts in conjunction with moderate food intake that will rev up your metabolism thus helping your body shed the unwanted weight. You can never choose specific body parts to tone and firm up. It’s all embedded in your genes. They determine where you put on weight and they also decide where you will lose from in a last in first out order.

Remember however to stick to the basics by focusing your efforts on strength training, low-intensity aerobic exercises and proper nutrition.

4. Fat pills/supplements

The supplement and fat burner pills is a multimillion dollar industry which thrives on the ignorance of less informed consumers, who are desperately looking for a quick solution to their weight loss woes. Such consumers are usually looking for faster, rapid results and end up going for these products in their quest for that elusive slim figure.

Let me set the record straight for you. Most of these pills are laced with high doses of caffeine which acts by dehydrating you instead of targeting the fat that you really want to get rid off. It is also strange that if you check the labels of these products, the manufacturer’s advice you to use them in combination with 60-90 minutes of aerobic exercise every day. So the question begs, what is really working, is it the exercise or the pills?

Steer clear of these pills and weight loss supplements unless if you enjoy throwing your hard earned money away. On the other hand, the pills also affect your health adversely because they have numerous side effects ranging from heart palpitations, increased heart rates, unexplained sweating, hot flashes, headaches, allergies, and even death. Keep away from these for your own health and well being.

There are no shortcuts or magic pills that will undo the effects of accumulated weight gain. It takes hard work, discipline and lots of patience to be successful at losing weight and being able to keep it off. Start making small changes in your eating and exercise habits, stick at it for as long as possible and success will definitely be on your side.

There are lots of pills out there and it is very hard to know which ones are bad for your health. Here is a list of dangerous diet pills you should avoid.