If there’s an industry plagued with profuse amounts of bullshit, it’s health and fitness. Know what it is so you can avoid it and spend your time doing what actually works.
While there’s more bullshit than I can list here, these are some of the most common culprits.
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A trainer at your gym says you need to drink special pre- and post-workout concoctions if you want to get results and, you’re in luck, because he just so happens to sell them. It’ll only cost you $100+ per month, but it’ll totally be worth it because you’re gonna look fantastic. Ahh, the stench of bullshit is hanging in the air.
Detoxes and Cleanses
Someone tells you to jump-start your regimen with a detox or cleanse because they’re just the best thing ever and who cares if you feel like death the entire time because you’re going to lose several pounds really quick. Bull. Shit.
Someone promises a supplement will drastically increase your results. Steamy bullshit. Look, if powdered unicorn farts provided magical powers or could rapidly increase your results without side effects, I’d gobble that stuff down and tell you about it too. But, until then, let’s stick to what science has shown to be beneficial. Eat real food and increase your intake of fruits and vegetables. I don’t care if that’s banal advice; it works. This smoothie recipe fits the bill perfectly, and I drink it almost every day.
Suffer to Succeed
Someone claims you have to sacrifice, suffer, and deprive yourself to build a better looking body; that eating well and working out has to become your entire life. This too is bullshit. Health and fitness isn’t nearly as complicated as some make it seem. You just need to do the right things consistently (refer to 5 Health and Fitness Principles That Don’t Suck after you finish this article); you don’t have to live in the gym or tote tupperware with you at all times.
This Means War!
The language used to describe workouts and diets is getting ridiculous. Someone proclaims that their workout program will make you a battle-ready warrior or superior specimen of the human race and their diet will make you bulletproof. So much bullshit. Doing a workout is not a heroic act and is not comparable to a battle or war. Seriously, we’re just working out. We’re picking things up and putting them back down repeatedly. Regardless of how “hard” you’re going, you’re doing it in a safe environment, and probably even in crisp air conditioning. When you’re done you get to go home and binge watch your favorite show on Netflix.
You can get stronger, improve your quality of life, increase your self confidence, change the appearance of your body, and experience other benefits from strength training, but your moral fiber or value will not improve from a workout program or certain eating style, no matter how hardcore it seems. Anyone claiming otherwise is about to drop a load … of bullshit.
Better Do This. Better Not Do That.
The absolutes stating “women should always do A, B, and C” or “women should never do X, Y, and Z” are bullshit. Do you know what women (i.e., you) should do? Whatever the hell you want. What makes you happy. What makes you feel great. What makes you the best version of yourself.
Want to lift heavy things? Do it, woman! Want to take cardio classes that leave you sweating profusely because you enjoy it? Go get it, girl! Prefer to be active in fun ways that have nothing to do with structured exercise? Have at it.
You don’t need anyone’s permission to do anything, nor do you owe anyone an explanation for why you do what it is you do. Do what you want, and own it.
Words like “groundbreaking” and “revolutionary” get tossed around frequently when describing quick-fix fads and gimmicks. Anything that claims you don’t need to change your lifestyle when you use their product or makes too-good-to-be-true promises is a load of steamy dooky. (But we’ll continue to wait patiently for the powdered unicorn fart capsules.)
OMG Everyone Is Stupid
It’s quite amusing to see certain workout styles becoming more of a cult than a fitness routine. Any group that puts down other people who don’t work out or eat the way they do has problems. I once heard a woman comment, “Oh my gosh can you believe she’s eating corn? It’s, like, a GMO and not even a vegetable!” Clearly she found herself superior to the target of her comment since she refuses to let corn pass her lips (well, at least this week; I’m sure she’ll be on a different diet the next: “What? You’re not drinking coffee with butter in it?!”).
How you eat is your business and if someone judges you for it, they’re an asshole. What a bunch of petty bullshit that we live in a world where people think they’re superior because they eat or work out a certain way. Any group claiming to be better than others because of their health and fitness lifestyle has eaten too many of their own bullshit sandwiches; don’t let them serve one to you, even if it’s organic and non-GMO.
Heroes are admired because of their actions; not their eating or workout regimen.