There’s so much talk about clean eating, interval training and deciphering what is right for your body that it’s easy to get confused. So we went to one of Australia’s top personal trainers to help us weed out the truth from the myth.
Social media “fitspo” sensation Emily Skye shares her daily fitness and nutrition tips and inspiration with more than 3 million followers and has cleared up some of the most common health and fitness fallacies for us to share with you:
FIB # 1: EATING CARBS AT NIGHT WILL MAKE YOU FAT
FACT: As one of the most controversial food groups around, carbohydrates rarely get a good wrap! Manly people believe that eating carbs at night is a real ‘no, no’ but Emily insists this is not the case: “Eating carbs at night won’t make you fat, nor will it stop you losing fat, it all comes down to what you eat and how much you eat each day.”
FIB # 2: LONG, SLOW CARDIO SESSIONS ARE THE BEST FOR BURNING FAT
FACT: Contrary to popular belief, embarking on a long, slow cardio session is not the best way to lose fat. Rather, Emily insists that High Intensity Interval Training and weights are the way to go. “Weights and high intensity training for a shorter period of time is definitely the most effective way to burn fat. You’ll burn fat for up to 24 hours after you finish training compared to only around an hour or two after slow cardio,” she said.
FIB # 3: IF YOU WANT TO LOSE FAT – THEN EAT LESS!
FACT: “When it comes to getting your fat percentage down, you don’t necessarily need to eat less, sometimes you may even need to eat more,” Emily said. What you eat is so much more important than how much you eat. Giving your body a good balance of nutrients is far more important than the size of your meals.
FIB # 4: EATING FAT WILL MAKE YOU FAT
FACT: “Fat will not make you fat. Good fats give you energy, help rebuild cells and helps to produce hormones,” says Emily, who advises that you should avoid consuming saturated fats (excluding coconut oil) and trans fats. “Also avoid low-fat foods as they are usually choc-full of sugar and chemicals.”
FIB # 5: WOMEN BULK UP IF THEY LIFT WEIGHTS
FACT: Weights shape and sculpt your body, whilst also burning fat and, unless you’re taking some serious supplements, they will never make you look masculine or bulky. According to Emily, it takes a lot of deliberate effort with your training and diet to get even close to bulking up, so unless you’re trying to get bulky, you simply won’t be able to.
FIB # 6: YOU NEED TO CRUNCH YOUR WAY TO ROCK HARD ABS
FACT: Want awesome abs? “You can do all the abdominal work you like, but if you don’t eat clean and do full-body exercises to remove the layer of fat that covers your abs, then you’ll never achieve the desired definition,” Emily said.
FIB # 7: STRENGTH TRAINING IS DANGEROUS
FACT: Whether you’re strength training or doing cardio, all exercises are dangerous if they’re not done correctly. As long as you learn proper technique strength training, it is completely safe and a really important part of any fitness plan.
FIB # 8: THE SCALES TELL ALL
FACT: The scales only tell you how much your total weight is, not how lean you are. So the best way to track progress is by how you look, how your clothes fit and by taking a measure of your total body fat.
FIB# 9: THE LONGER YOU SWEAT, THE BETTER YOU’LL GET
FACT: When it comes to exercise it’s all about quality, not quantity, Emily says. “Overtraining can actually cause your body stress, and it can even go into fight or flight mode which can cause it to store fat. Focusing on efficient workouts, good nutrition, adequate sleep and rest will give you the best shot at getting the best results.”
FIB #10: YOU BURN MORE FAT ON AN EMPTY STOMACH
FACT: This is really a personal preference. A lot of people don’t tend to train as vigorously when they have an empty stomach and tend to binge after training. Fuelling your body a few hours before exercising with nutritious food will have a much greater impact on your fat burning potential as you have more energy to push through your workout.