With so much conflicting information available regarding weightlifting, it can be difficult to identify what is true and what isn’t. Five of the greatest myths that need to be dispelled are:
Lifting weights does not necessarily increase muscle mass but rather tones and shapes muscles to their ideal size. Ask any body builder and they will tell you that it takes hard work to build muscle mass and involves increased calorie intake as well as regular and rigorous workouts.
2. Weightlifting Causes Injuries
While there is some truth in this myth, it is only when weights are being lifted incorrectly that injuries to the joints, tendons and even bones can occur. This is however the same for any type of exercise. But don’t think you are going to get away pain-free – muscles will be tender or achy after a weightlifting workout.
3. Man Vs. Machine
Machines are great for simplifying weightlifting and minimizing the risk of performing an exercise incorrectly. However, they restrict you to a singular motion, working only specific muscles groups. Free weights provide you with greater range of motion thereby creating more activity in a larger amount of muscles.
4. The Heavy
Lifting heavier weights does not mean that you will see better or faster results. Starting with light weights and working your way up to heavier weights will provide optimal results. It is never recommended to lift weights in excess of what you can achieve comfortably to avoid injury.
5. The Big Fat Issue
Muscle does not ever turn to fat no matter whether you stop lifting weights or exercising. The muscle mass and tone may deteriorate over time or due to a lack of certain nutrients in your diet forcing your body to use muscle for energy.