The Fitness Pendulum: Why Extremes Don’T Work
It’s sad but true: The vast majority of people who work out fail to see any true, long-lasting results from their efforts. Gyms are packed with more people than ever before, membership is at an all-time high, yet only a small minority stick with it and ultimately reap the rewards.
How can this be? They are going to the gym, or working out elsewhere, so shouldn’t they see results?
Absolutely. They should.
The problem is that far too many are exercising at the extreme ends of the fitness pendulum. It’s either 6-second abs or AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible) of an insane amount of weight.
Too many people are doing too little, or too much.
Unfortunately, the “too little or too much” approach has been around forever. There are those who want the quick fix, huge results with minimal and sometimes even no effort whatsoever. The fitness industry is chock full of products and programs that promise to deliver enormous results in little time with little effort and for little money.
Well, you get out what you put in. The human body needs to be challenged in order to change. Too little doesn’t provide enough “stress” on your muscular and cardiovascular systems to force them to adapt, and adaptation means results.
Then there are those who swing way too far in the other direction, believing that more is better. Much more. More weight, more repetitions, riskier exercises, more everything. If ten push-ups are good, one hundred push-ups must be infinitely better. Why do plyometric box jumps on a one-foot box when there’s a three-foot high one as well?
Two reasons: Burnout and injury. These are the by-products of the “too much” approach to exercise. If you’re lucky, doing too much will only result in what’s known as “overtraining syndrome,” characterized by decreased performance, physical fatigue and mental burnout. If you are less fortunate as so many are from excessive exercise, pushing yourself too hard, too soon and too often will often result in injury, oftentimes severe.
So stay away from the ends of fitness pendulum. Find the middle.
The middle is the sweet-spot: It’s smart, safe and sustainable. Most importantly, the middle delivers results. You just have to give it time.
Want a great workout to get you started? Try this Two-Minute Ab Workout For Beginners.