6 Things I Have Changed My Mind About (Part 2)

Last night I went to Applebees and I saw some pretty amazing stuff.  There was a guy there, who was making balloon animals, right at the bar, next to me.  Except, they weren’t quite animals.  He made a mug of beer which even had the foam! He made a stripper on a pole, the rose from Beauty and the Beast, and Thor’s helmet and hammer.  All and all it was pretty damn impressive, and I was very happy to of taken home a souvenir.

Rose from Beauty and the Beast

I really wanted a dumbbell though.

Part 2 of the things I have changed my mind about.

3. What I Once Thought:

Pain is a normal part of exercise.

When I was younger, pain was an integral part of my life. Between lifting heavy and playing sports, my body took a beating. My lower back hurt consistently, my knees were constantly throbbing, and I was getting injured multiple times per year. But all this is the normal process of working out hard right?  They do always say “no pain, no gain.” This was the mantra I lived by.

Even today as a trainer, people I work with or meet in the gym are always holding their lower back or elbows as if it bothers them. They always seem to respond, “It only hurts after my workouts” or”It loosens up after I warm up.” All these means you have pain associated with something you are doing in the gym and that my friend is no good.

What I Think Now:

The first time it started to dawn on me that I should not feel pain during exercise is after it was too late. I have already had my first herniated disk between L5 and S1. After rehabbing my own back to health, which took a full year to do, I was finally pain free, I was able to run without pain and weight train without pain. I realized pain with exercise is not supposed to happen. As I started to try and get strong again, certain movements started to bother my back. If this happened I took a step back, lightened the load, or even removed the exercise from my program completely. Over the course of three years of doing this, I can implement just about any exercise into my program without having back pain. I have not had knee pain in years, even after spraining my MCL playing football. I have had many clients who say, “my this muscle hurts after exercise, but that’s normal.” When did pain ever become the norm? If you have pain in any muscle group for any reason at all during exercise or not ,find someone who can help you fix it. Whether it be a good physical therapist, personal trainer, massage therapist, etc.

4. What I Once Thought:

You have to eat five-six meals per day.

In college, I studied Exercise Science and Nutrition at Queens College. I was even Dietetics major for quite some time before I decided that I wanted to pursue physical therapy. The first thing we are taught is that we need to eat frequently throughout the day, as to not slow down our metabolism.  Eat every two to three hours to keep yourself from going into starvation mode; this will spare your muscle mass and help you burn the fat.

What I Think Now:

Don’t get me wrong now, the above statement about what I used to think, is not invalid. The ideas up there stand true. But it’s more that I have added ideas to this theory. The truth is that eating five to six square meals per day is not the only way to lose weight and keep muscle mass. There is a lot of research coming out now about the effects of fasting on weight loss and muscle gain. The intermittent fasting nutrition plan has made a splash in the fitness field. I believe it works, and I have the success of some clients doing it. The problem with it is it’s hard to do.

Intermittent fasting consists of having a cheat day, a fast day and the rest of the days are partial fasts.

Now don’t go crazy and say I am not telling you to eat. I do not want to delve too deep into this topic yet, because many of you do not have the nutrition basics down. You should start off by referring back to my Nutrition Plan 101 post, and continue reading the series as it is played out. Each one will build the building blocks for the next post.  But the point I am trying to make here is that it is all about the amount of calories we consume over a week or month period and not a day to day basis.  If one day you cheat and eat an extra 200 calories, you can always just cut out an extra 200 calories throughout the rest of the week in order to still maintain the number of calories needed for that week.  By looking at nutrition in a much larger sense then one day, it gives you a lot more wiggle room for your indulgences, as well as keep you from going crazy when you do mess up.

Was this post helpful, enlightening, the purest, greatest thing you ever read? What have you changed your mind about? Let me know, leave a comment below!


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