Old Ideas

It’s interesting how many old ideas about losing weight and working out are still floating around. Of course I’m not here to talk about every one of them. That task could fill book after book. However, I did hear one recently that I thought I would address here.

I had an unexpected cheat meal. It happens and I could have avoided it, but it was with a friend and I did not want to miss this particular get together, and I also wanted to eat the food that was being served.

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The good news is I knew about the meal a few hours a head of time. So what did I do? I worked out like crazy! I seriously punished myself before I went to eat. As a result, I felt good about the meal and it did not affect my weight at all.

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A few days later I was addressing another group of friends and telling them the story I just told you. One of my friends tuned and said to me, “You should have worked out after so you could burn off the meal.”

“Working off” a meal is just a bad way to look at it. It’s outdated. It is one of those things that sound logical but does not stand up under the latest in scientific scrutiny.

When you work out before a bad meal (particularly resistance training), your muscles need glucose to repair themselves. This means when you eat a high-carb meal, your muscle cells are competing with your fat cells for the sugar in your blood. If you work your muscles hard enough, they will win the contest. This is why you want to work out before you have a cheat meal.

That said, working out after a bad meal is not going to hurt anything and it is better than not working out at all. However, working out after is an attempt to correct damage that has already happened. You are trying to mobilize fat storage which is much more difficult than preventing the problem. Preventing the problem is what happens when you work out before a bad meal. Your muscles soaks up the glucose before your fat cells can take them.

There are many other old and bad ideas that people still believe. Let’s here some that you have heard in the comment section.

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