Five Fitness Terms That May Not Mean What you Think
If you are new to fitness or coming back after a long layoff from the gym, getting in shape can be very confusing and sometimes scary. There are so many ways to get fit that deciphering what is right and what is wrong for you may be daunting. It also does not help that the fitness world is filled with terms that will downright confuse you and many “experts” will use this to their advantage to get you to join their gym.
I’m not here to save the day, but I am here to clear up some misconceptions and define some of the different terminology used in fitness in order to help you make the right choice when you are looking to join a gym and get the results that you have always wanted.
Five Fitness Terms That May Not Mean What You Think
1. Periodization: When you read an article related to fitness and the term periodization is used, don’t run the other way. I promise it is not a scary word. In fact, the word periodization simply means, a plan. That’s right, it is a plan to get you from Point A to Point B. If you are serious about getting fit and getting results, then looking for a gym that follows a plan is what you need. A plan that follows proper progressions and builds on itself is really the only way in which you willachieve your goals. So next time a trainer says the word periodization when speaking to you, know that he means a plan, but at the same time make sure it’s the right plan for you.
2. Training: We segue perfectly from periodization into this next word that is misunderstood. If periodization is the plan then the training is what you do within that plan to get you to achieve your specific goals. Notice I said “specific goals”, which is what you should set in order to really see results. Each training session within the plan should be designed to reach your goal. If at the end of the program you are no closer to your goal or have yet to attain it then you need to re-evaluate what you are doing in your training. For instance, if you are looking to burn fat, then your training should be geared towards lifting weights and doing conditioning that raises your heart rate and then allows it to drop. Make sure your plan and your training is focused on your specific goals, don’t just workout for the sake of working out.
3. Core: This is one of the most misunderstood words in the fitness industry, however it is still continuously used in the wrong way. When most people think about the word core they automatically think of your abdominal region and having that awesome six pack. If you see someone with a nice six pack, yes more than likely they have a great eating regimen but it does not mean they have a strong core. Your core consists of the musculature from just around the shoulder region down to your glutes, also known as your butt. It is not only the muscles on your front side but more importantly the muscles that you don’t see. So, what’s the role of the core? The core is responsible for stabilizing your spine, helping your posture, and improving your balance. The stronger your core is the less likely you are to have an injury. If your training plan is just working on building a nice six pack then you are missing an important ingredient to not only achieving results but to remaining healthy as well. Make sure you are training your core the right way. One of my favorite exercises to building a strong core are planks in the pushup position. This exercise will not only develop a strong core but will aid you in getting that sought after pushup.
4. Lose Weight: Yes, I know this is a phrase and not a word but it is one that I hear often and can drive me up the wall. I completely understand why people use this phrase but we should also be aware of the fact that getting fit doesn’t necessarily mean losing weight. We have people here at Training for Warriors Long Island that have lost minimal weight but have incredible results. The important thing to remember is that the weight on the scale is only a small part of your overall picture of fitness and health, so losing weight really means nothing. If you are following the right type of training program then you will build lean muscle and burn fat. The number on the scale may not move but you will see that clothes that used to be snug are now fitting the right way as you drop sizes. When looking at your results from a fitness and health standpoint you cannot focus on losing weight but building lean muscle and burning fat. Now stop looking at that scale and pay attention to how your body is looking.
5. Tone: I saved the best term for last. It is the term that we hear most often as fitness professionals. When people speak about their goals most times they refer to getting toned. You hear people say,”Oh, I want tone arms.” What this really means is building muscle. There is no way to get ‘toned’ if you do not build muscle. That is why one of the best ways to achieving the goal of burning fat and building muscle is to lift weights. Don’t be scared ladies, this does not mean you are going to look like a bodybuilder, that is just something portrayed in the magazines with some enhancements. Lifting weights is the single best way to get you toned. Your training program must utilize weight training in order to get the results you are looking for.
Hopefully this helped clarify some of these terms and you have a better understanding of what they mean and how to achieve your goals.
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