Put on your sneakers, throw your hair in a ponytail and go. Working out should really be that simple, but we all know it's not. In a world where we pray that our lemons are Lulu and our calorie burn is higher than our top-knots, it's almost too easy to blindly fall into fitness trends.
Certain trends (like the ever-so effective HIIT) should stick around. But for other ones, it's time to gracefully bow out.
Here are four fitness trends that need to go:
1. Workout Shaming
Fitness is not one-size-fits-all. From pilates and yoga to CrossFit and Zumba, there are many different forms of exercise people enjoy for a variety of reasons. I personally can't touch my toes, but I can run pretty damn far. Does that mean I don't go to yoga because I'm not in "yoga shape?" No way. I may not be the best, but it doesn't stop me from trying.
What if you hate running, even though it's the holy grail of fitness? Don't run. Nowhere does it say you have to run to be in shape. We should be encouraging people to find what they love, not shaming their choices.
2. Spending More Money Equals Better Workout
I love many boutique studios, but my wallet doesn't. However, just because I can't afford to go to a SoulCycle class regularly doesn't mean my regular spin class isn't a good workout. No matter where you sweat, you get what you put into it. You don't need a fancy gym membership to have an effective workout.
3. Not Sweating Means You Didn't Work Hard
Admit it: You feel pretty badass when you finish a sweaty treadmill run. With the glistening sweat on your body, you have tangible (and smelly) proof of a good workout. There's no doubt sweat is an important component of fitness. It is our body's way of cooling off, after all.
But is a 30-minute run better than a yoga or pilates session? It's not necessarily better; it just provides different benefits. According to an article on the Daily Burn, we need both sweaty cardio and the minimal sweat workouts, like strength training and yoga. It's the intensity, not the sweat-factor of your exercise that determines a good day in the gym. Plus, some people just naturally sweat more. It's no biggie. Either way, don't sweat it.
4. Believing Everyone Is An Expert
I like to eat, but I'm not an expert on all things food. Similarly, I like to run, but I'm not an expert on running. When it comes to fitness, not everyone goes through the certification and training that is required to hand out current, accurate advice. But with social media and blogs galore, it seems like everyone is an expert these days. This can be dangerous, confusing and overwhelming. Appearance and personal success do not equal certifications.
Don't be a blind consumer of media. Be aware of sites and social media accounts that dole out generic nutrition and workout advice without research, and always take the information with a grain of salt.
Let's be real: Even with the information in this post, you know your body best. The true experts in the field are those who approach each client and situation differently because fitness and nutrition is individual. The most important part of fitness is to find a form of exercise that is sustainable in the long run and, most importantly, that you enjoy. Ignore the societal BS and pump up the other BS (Britney, obviously).