There are many misconceptions surrounding fitness and exercise. As the summer months are in full effect, many people are on a mission to get in shape. But outdated fitness myths might be preventing people from reaching their goals. Think about it: do you know your myths from your facts?

Patricia Leigh, an exercise technician at Health First Pro-Health & Fitness Center in Viera, wants to set the record straight. Here are some common workout myths she wants you to know about to make sure your summer workouts are effective.

STRENGTH TRAINING WILL MAKE YOU “BULK UP.”
False. This has been a popular myth for years. One problem is that it really doesn’t have a huge impact on women, as women have much lower testosterone levels than men. As a result, it can be challenging for some women to build huge muscles. It’s important to note that, yes, lifting heavy weights will get you stronger, but maintaining a healthy diet and integrating cardio into your workout routine are important factors when it comes to adding muscle and losing fat.

IF YOU DON’T FEEL SORE, YOU DIDN’T GET A GOOD WORKOUT.
False. There are times when you will have a good workout and not feel any muscle soreness, and that’s perfectly fine. When muscles are being overloaded, tears are created, causing soreness. This isn’t cause for concern; however, if you’re consistently sore following each workout, take some time to rest and recover. Remember, while muscle soreness can be okay, it isn’t the perfect barometer for a good workout.

YOU SHOULD WORK OUT EVERY DAY.
True. Any form of daily physical activity is a huge plus, especially when you’re trying to reach certain health goals. Daily activity can include anything, from going to the gym, walking the dog around the neighborhood or participating in active activities or intensity training that get your heart rate pumping.

EXERCISE ON AN EMPTY STOMACH TO BURN MORE FAT.
True and False. It all depends on the type of exercises you are doing. For example, fasting might work to your advantage when going for a light walk, running or doing a workout that’s consistent. On the other hand, it’s vital to avoid fasting when doing an intense workout for a long period of time.

CRUNCHES WILL GIVE YOU A FLAT STOMACH.
False. It’s an ab exercise that works if you don’t have layers of fat covering your abdominal muscles. If so, it’s important to work hard to get rid of the belly fat with a combination of a healthy diet and exercise. Combine these two factors with crunches and before you know it, you’ll start to see the results you’re looking for.

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