5 Fitness Mantras That Are Bulls#!t
Sports psychologists have advocated using mantras help push athletes to top performances. In fact, a few years ago at the Rio Olympic games, US gymnast Laurie Hernandez was often seen mouthing to herself “you got this,” right before competing. Mantras can serve as an inspirational tool to help get you through an intense workout. This positive inner voice can become your cheerleader when adversity mounts. Imagine getting to the hardest part of your workout and instead of hearing: “this is too hard, you can’t do it,” your inner voice is championing: “you are strong, don’t give up!” Unfortunately not all mantras are created equal. Social media is flooded with so-called #fitspo phrases that when applied to the wrong scenario, could derail any well intentioned fitness efforts.
1. "I Regret That Workout, Said No One Ever"
It’s true that showing up is sometimes half the battle to working out. And even though exercise floods the bloodstream with feel-good endorphins, pushing yourself to workout when the body needs a day of rest can increase your risk for injury. Take a physical inventory of yourself before skipping a workout - if you’ve been pushing yourself hard for consecutive days, or you're just starting to amp-up the intensity of your routine, honor your body’s need to recover. But if you find yourself not wanting to work out because you’re not in the mood, or had a long day, then re-evaluate the intensity level of your workout. Perhaps you opt to take all of the modifications we offer in class, and/or walk for your cardio intervals. That's why we practice Integrated Training, not solely high intensity interval training. Or maybe you decide to simply stay home and stretch during your favorite show, or go for a walk on the beach? It is important to keep in mind that all elite athletes schedule light days and rest days during their workout weeks.
2. "Strong is the New Skinny"
The inherent message here is that skinny is the only accepted, desired body type. And now we’re expected to not only be skinny, but also strong. The reality is that the two are not mutually exclusive. There are plenty of strong individuals whose body types we would not label as "skinny." No one has exemplified this more than body-positive Instagrammer Jessamyn Stanley who has literally turned the lithe, Lululemon wearing yogi stereotype on its head. Every body is a strong body - skinny, average, overweight. Perhaps we should not measure strength by muscle definition or body type, but rather the ease at which we are able to complete everyday tasks? Yes, we see that you can bench press a lot bro, but can you scratch your own shoulder?
3. "Eat Clean, Train Dirty"
No sugar, no carbs, no dairy… no life. Okay, so maybe that’s a bit dramatic but the internet is flooded with article after article about elimination diets and clean eating. Properly nourishing your body is paramount to general well-being, health and energy levels, but also give yourself permission to indulge in a cheat day every once in awhile. Abstinence can add stress to the body, leading to adverse reactions. Additionally, when we abstain from things, we tend to over-indulger whenever we return to it. Life is all about balance, moderation, and enjoyment in the smallest pleasures. For more specifics on how to accomplish this, consult a nutritionist. We recommend our local friend Kara Lang Romero. Check out her website here: https://www.klrwellnessworks.com/
4. "No Pain, No Gain"
Here's a secret: if you ever hear a fitness "professional" say this, leave the room! Improper form, no gain. Injured, no gain. Improper form causes you to engage the incorrect muscles, making your reps superfluous. If that wasn't bad enough, that imbalance in your body's workload is what causes muscle and tendon injuries, the ladder being a more common result and often taking longer to heal. All of our trainers here at Poise Fitness are certified through the National Academy of Sports & Medicine (NASM) cue proper technique and preach form over heavier weight. If any of the moves become painful during class, let your instructor know and we will offer up modifications so you can continue on your fitness journey and not be sidelined by unnecessary injury.
5. "Unless You Puke, Faint Or Die, Keep Going"
Seriously, Jillian Michaels? With all due respect to you and the deeply flawed show that is The Biggest Loser, you would get fired if you worked at Poise. Once again, this is why we practice Integrated Training over solely high intensity interval training...because you're an adult and you don't deserve to be yelled at for making a positive change in your life.