WHY MOST EXERCISE PLANS FAIL TO HELP YOU LOSE WEIGHT
By CEO Robert Forster, PT
If you exercise for hours each week and have not achieved the body you desire, it’s not your fault. The training techniques and practices propagated by coaches and influencers who guide recreational athletes have gone off the tracks when it comes to science based exercise and diet.
Although we now have the science that provides a road map to achieve sustainable weight management, peak fitness and great athletic performances, the fitness industry has failed to bring it to the people.
My career in Physical Therapy began just as an exciting health and fitness trend began to change the culture in the US in the late 70’s. It seemed overnight people began to think more about what they ate and the importance of exercise. The connection between lifestyle and diet on our health became a national preoccupation. People began running, cycling, roller-blading, and swimming. Gyms began popping up in towns across the country as the fitness culture blossomed. To my disappointment, 40 years down the road, the acumen of the general public regarding the most effective ways to exercise and achieve ideal body weight has not changed since the dawn of this modern fitness movement.
The problem was that early fitness buffs had little scientific evidence to guide their workouts or their diets. There was not enough research at the time in regard to how best achieve fitness and improved health. Instead, we looked to our sports heroes and their personal preferences for training and what to eat to perform better and be healthier. This is faulty thinking; elite athletes are obviously different than the rest of us. They are, by definition, “genetic freaks” with different physiology than nearly all of the rest of us.
As elite athletic performance has improved dramatically with the advent of science based training and nutrition, we now realize those early sports heroes were successful in spite of their now discredited personal preferences. Yet, still today those who coach, train, and create diets for recreational athletes and fitness enthusiasts are still following the unscientific methods of yesterday’s heroes.
For instance, science has proven that the high carb diet popularized by early endurance athletes was misguided. Athletes get leaner and do better when they are fed and trained in a way that re-programs their bodies to burn more fat. Likewise, we now know when it comes to training, heart rate specific workouts are more productive than simply training more and more. Likewise, science has also shown us that recovery is as critical to performance and weight management as the workouts, yet too many programs emphasize a steady diet of high intensity workouts for people to lose weight.
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