10: Tuesday Topics | What’s the worst fitness advice you’ve ever received?

I am doing NaBloPoMo this month. 30 blog posts in 30 days. Come join me. #nablopomo2020

This week, I am linking up with  Kookyrunner and Zenaida  for Tuesday Topics and we’re talking about the worst fitness advice we’re ever received. There is definitely some not-so-good advice swirling around in fitness circles sometimes, although I think a lot of the common myths have been debunked.

Here are a few things that always stood out for me:

Carbs are bad for you.

This is a huge misconception and one of my biggest pet peeves. Hello, have you met me? I grew up in the land of bread, potatoes, and noodles and nobody can convince me that carbs are bad for me. It just depends on which kind of carbs you eat and how much. The misconception is that carbs is just white pasta and white bread, but did you know that most vegetables have carbs, too? There is nothing inherently bad about carbs and I’ll always make room for good quality carbs in my diet (and sometimes even the not-so-good kind). 

You need to eat protein bars. 

A personal trainer at my gym once told me that I needed to eat protein bars as snacks during the day when I am training. Dude, I am not a professional athlete. I don’t train multiple hours per day. This is absolute BS and I am pretty sure he was just trying to sell me stuff.  While I have occasionally reached for a protein bar, they’re usually higher calorie than candy bars and you definitely don’t want to snack on them randomly throughout the day. I have used them as a meal replacement or before a more intense workout. And yes, they might be healthier than a candy bar but the calories will add up. If you are not a high-performance athlete, you won’t be able to work those extra calories off.

You need to exercise if you wan to lose weight.

Not exactly. Ever heard the phrase “you can’t out-exercise a bad diet”? It’s mostly true. If you eat shitty, your weight might not budge, even if you work out regularly. Of course, it’s healthy and good for you to move your body every day, but I really believe that you need to clean up your diet and feed your body good, nutritious things, if you want to actually change your body and that number on your scale. 

No pain, no gain.

Hard workouts have their place, but more often than not, a workout should feel ‘easy’. Consistency is much more important than maximum effort. And for Peet’s sake, please stop if you’re in any sort of pain. There is no benefit from pushing through a painful workout, you’ll risk injury instead. Now, listen, I said pain, not discomfort from exertion. Those are two different things. Everybody should be in tune with their body and know the difference between actual pain and just discomfort when your brain is telling you to “stop”. You alone know what you’re capable of.

What’s the worst fitness advice you’ve received?

  1. After her early evening class, a trainer would keep on telling us not to eat after working out and to go to be hungry, otherwise “we wouldn’t lose weight”…

    1. That’s terrible advice!

  2. ‘No pain no gain’ is the worst in my opinion.
    But it dates back to the lack of knowledge that sore muscle come from microfractures in your muscle tissue.
    Also, stretching cold muscles is so bad! You need to warm up before you can stretch a muscle effectively. Injuries are the result if not.

    1. Totally agree. Sometimes we get “smarter” along the way while old advice sticks around.

  3. I think most “bad” advice is well-intentioned, but it’s frustrating navigating through it all. My biggest annoyance is when others try to push their goals/objectives off on others.

    1. I am with you – I get annoyed too when others try to push their goals on me. Those things don’t translate 1:1.

  4. no pain no gain is literally the worst advice! I agree that you can not out exercise a poor diet. Believe me I’ve tried!

    1. Haha, haven’t we all?

  5. Argh enough with the protein!!! And yay for carbs! I think most diet advice is rooted in trying to sell us something.

    1. I think so, too. Diet advice is often tied to whatever seems to be “in” right now ….

  6. Increasing your mileage to become faster!

    This is so wrong. I only run 3 times a week. Maybe 3-4 miles each time. I’ve gotten a little faster because of cross training, adding strength workouts and incorporating interval runs and hill sprints.

    1. Yes!!! Increasing mileage did nothing for speed, but cross-training and weights did! Totally agree.

  7. Yikes. A lot of these make me cringe!! I’m not sure I’ve ever heard bad fitness advice but the no carbs one gets to me too/ I guess because they are a true staple in my household!

    Hope all is well with you, momma. Great to be back today ❤️

    1. Carbs are staples in my household, too. No way I am ever going to change that. Thanks for coming by, lady!

  8. Looks like we had some similar things in our posts. Thanks for linking up with us!

  9. My worst advice was by team mate actually. For warm up we ran the stairs in the stadium twice and my legs were so so tired when we actually had to run the race (only 100m but it showed in the results). So definitely not a good advice.

    1. Uhm, no. Definitely not a good idea… stair running is like it’s own workout!

  10. I can’t think of anything you haven’t mentioned already! There is some bad and at time dangerous advice floating around out there!

    1. You’d hope that bad advice goes away over time!

  11. Totally forgot about the time in my life where I thought I HAD to have a protein bar every day – ugh! Also I never really found one that I actually liked – they always tasted so bad.

  12. I agree with all these points! Now, I will say for most of us, as we get older, we often can’t eat as many carbs. And it’s a bummer. But nothing is off the table!

    1. True, but I agree, nothing is off the table ;)

  13. I have heard many of these specific ones, but the others that drive me crazy are the dogmatic declarations that “everyone” must do things the same way. Two examples from people online I don’t follow anymore: (1) ALL women must lift heavy weights (um, no… I don’t, and I have plenty of strength, thanks), and (2) your rest days must be COMPLETE rest, no activity (also no… I feel much better when I move, so I move in some way every day… some days are just easier than others). This advice you cite, too, gets at that age old problem of declaring One Right Way. Here’s to the resistance. ;)

    I get that my performance won’t improve much if I’m not challenging myself, but I’m also so much less likely to keep it up if it feels like torture!

    1. Yes, it should never feel like torture! Just a good challenge ;)

  15. Great bad advice! lol
    I have been given advice about my choices that was couched in the “REAL runners do it this way … ” which was opposite of my way. That advice stuck in my head for way too long and took a long time to overcome! I don’t run fast or super long distances all the time, but I run, and I’m real, and therefore I’m a real runner. I try to use my voice to encourage people to succeed, in whatever way that looks to them.

    1. Oh, I HATE the “REAL runners do it this way”-advice…. everybody who gets out there and puts one foot in front of the other is a runner in my book and I totally live by the motto “you do you!”.

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