By: Kyle Finneron
I don’t think everyone should be a fitness model or has to look like people in Hollywood or in the magazines. (In real life, they don’t even look like those published pictures). However, excess weight can cut a life short and can make life a whole lot more difficult than it needs to be. I simply want everyone to be happy and healthy.
“Every pound of excess weight exerts about four pounds of extra pressure on the knees. So a person who is 10 pounds overweight has 40 pounds of extra pressure on his knees” explained Eric Matteson, MD, chair of the rheumatology division at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in an article “How Fat Affects Arthritis” published on arthritise.org.
Additional weight also puts pressure on your internal organs and causes them to have to work harder just to function correctly.
There is too much tragedy in the world as it is; this is one area that we can actually do something about. So I have compiled a list of five reasons most people are not seeing results in the gym. If you have extra weight to lose, but have not been able to see the result you desire despite your efforts, hopefully this will help.
Diet is garbage
Say it with me now, “You can’t out work a bad diet!” That’s the simple truth. Some people may love going to the gym and getting exercise, which is great. But if they’re complaining about not seeing results, most likely their diet is a mess. With thousands of diets on the Internet, my suggestion is speak with a professional to see which nutrition plan is best for you. There is no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all” diet. Everyone is different and bodies process food and nutrients differently. My simple guidelines are: Eat your vegetables; eat quality proteins; eat nutrient-dense food; stay hydrated; embrace healthy fats (nuts, seeds and avocados) and above all; cut out the junk!
I see this all the time. People will come into the gym, go through the exact same routine every day, barely break a sweat, then down a protein shake as they leave. The human body will adapt to almost any routine. That being said, as the body adapts to a particular routine the benefits from said routine decrease. This is called diminishing marginal return and they happen with muscle building and fat loss. Here’s an example: someone starts a four week weight training program. The first time though the program they lose eight pounds. The second time through they might lose six, then four, then one pound. Eventually the body will reach a point where it has adapted and there will not be any change in weight. Some people refer to this as hitting a plateau. Cross training can be hugely beneficial in pushing past those plateaus. Try to change up your routine every four to six weeks. Do you have a hard time picking a workout plan? Speak with a personal trainer and they can help you pick out a good plan that will work for your goals and break your stale routine.
This happens A LOT. There is a sad truth in the fitness industry. Most of the big stars with the fantastic physiques did not get them naturally. Some of the industry’s favorite tools are Photoshop and performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). There are a lot of people that are famous on Instagram or around the Internet that have heavily photoshopped their images. Also there is a very good chance that most cover models and people you see with great physiques in magazines are on some form of PEDs which include steroids, synthetic human growth hormone (HGH), peptides and many, many more. This doesn’t only happen in Hollywood and in big markets. There are more people than you would expect that are “on gear,” which means PEDs. I did not realize this when I lived down South and would look at these people in the gym with amazing physiques and would want to look like them. Little did I know they are spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars a month for pills or injections. Something that I have learned is pictures can lie easier than videos, especially videos like Snapchat where you can’t edit the video beforehand. When picking someone to look up to, pick someone because of their work ethic, what they stand for, or what they’ve been through, not just their physique.
Neglected muscle groups
It happens so much it has actually become a meme, “Friends don’t let friends skip leg day,” but it still happens all the time. The benefits of training your legs are too numerous to list but here is one: squatting can increase the body’s natural levels of HGH by 12 percent, according to a medical paper called “The acute hormonal response to free weight and machine weight resistance exercise” published by the U.S. National Library of MedicineNational Institutes of Health. This natural release and increase in HGH will help you burn more fat, build more muscle and sleep better. Basically the whole reason we go to the gym, right? The squat is a complex movement but a few key points to remember include: keep your core tight, maintain a neutral spine, sit your hips back, keep the weight towards your heels, and don’t let your knees go past your toes.
Indulgence in protein shakes
Here’s the truth, if people spend their time at the gym giving a lackluster effort working out, then cap off their efforts with a protein shake (or similar), they could be doing more harm than good — i.e. intaking more calories than burned. Many mainstream protein shakes are packed with sugar or artificial sweeteners. This can cause those little shakes to have hundreds of calories in them. Protein is an essential part of any diet, but those shakes should only be used if people do not have enough quality protein in their diet. Most protein shakes are made from dairy products (whey, casein) which can be inflammatory to some people. Additionally, hemp protein is not absorbed well by the body and egg protein is expensive and your body can develop an allergy if you consume too many eggs. My suggestions? Try to get all the protein you need from the quality food you eat. Some of my favorites are grass-fed ground beef, organic chicken or turkey, nuts, wild-caught fish, local eggs and bacon.