I am only placing 11 of the 22 Myths and Fairy Tales here for your reading pleasure. You can find the remaining 11 Myths in The CTTC Book.
Myth Number 1
Spot reducing is impossible.
It is a myth that you cannot “spot-reduce,” which means losing excess body fat from one specific part of your body.
There are, in fact, three successful methods for spot-reducing. One is liposuction. The other two are by amputating some part of your body, or by contracting a flesh-eating bacterial infection on the part of your body that you want to spot-reduce. These are the only three methods I know of that actually work.
It is, however, a myth that you can spot-reduce by doing some particular exercise for a specific body part. Doing hundreds of reps and dozens of different exercises for your abdominals will not get rid of the excess body fat around your waist.
And ladies, I’m equally sorry to break the bad news to you, but those dinky little exercises they like to have you do for your hips, butt, and thighs are a total waste of time for losing excess body fat from those areas too.
You can’t exercise body fat off like that. You also can’t roll it off, massage it off, sauna it off, steam it off, cream it off, vibrate it off, magnetize it off, jiggle it off, wrap it off, yoga it off, freeze it off, sweat it off, meditate it off or positive think excess body fat off of one specific part of your body. No machine can do it, no special piece of equipment can do it, no miracle program can do it, no pill can do it, no patch can do it, and no trainer can do it for you either. It can’t be done, period! So just learn to live with this irritating fact of life.
Think about this logically. If it were possible to spot-reduce, then American football linemen would have lovely thin legs under their rather large bellies. Their legs certainly get enough exercise to spot-reduce them. Over-fat tennis players would have one fat-free, well-toned arm hanging from a much fatter body. Truck drivers would all have cute little butts from sitting on a vibrating seat for hours every day…and a whole lot of people would have fat-free jaws…for obvious reasons.
More logic: If it were possible to gain body fat wherever you wanted, you would never see guys with skinny legs and a beer-gut…or women with a thin upper body but huge hips. These people would simply distribute their body fat more evenly…or buy a “miracle machine” to do it for them.
Everyone’s body puts body fat on more in some places and less in other places. So if you can’t put body fat on where you want to, you can’t take it off only where you want to either.
When your body loses fat, it loses it from all over…not just from one specific place. And like the previous paragraph, everyone will also lose body fat from one place on their body faster than from another place.
However, this has nothing whatsoever to do with exercising that particular part of their body. They will lose body fat from that place more rapidly no matter which exercises they do.
The opposite is also true. There are other places on your body where you will lose body fat more slowly. I can do lower back exercises all day long, but the last excess body fat that I lose will still always be that little roll on my lower back. So when I feel the fat roll on my lower back becoming less and less, I know that I am finally getting close to the end of another fat loss adventure…no matter what exercises I did to get there.
One of the funniest images to ever work its way into my twisted little mind is that of all the over-fat people who have bought one (or more) of the hundreds of different “miracle abdominal machines” on the market, walking around with fat legs, arms, chests, backs, butts and heads…but with tiny waists and rippling abdominal muscles. Do you get the real picture now? Spot-reduction is a myth. It’s not going to happen, so forget about it.
Myth Number 3
Traditional aerobic exercise is the best way to lose excess body fat and keep it off.
An emphatic NO! See Chapter 4 in The CTTC Book.
Myth Number 4
You can get an effective, full-body workout in ten to fifteen minutes (or even less), a couple of times a week.
Boy do I wish this were true. I would be the first one to jump on this program. Unfortunately, it is just another wish.
With no warm-up, no cool down, and minimum rest periods, you could only effectively do about six to ten sets of exercises in ten or fifteen minutes…maximum. This is enough to effectively exercise only one large group or two small groups of muscles…if you used heavy weights and very short rest periods. But then you would still have to exercise at least three to four days a week in order to effectively work all five major muscle groups even one time a week. And remember, this does not include warm-ups, cool downs, or any cardio work.
I have, on occasion, exercised with weights for fifteen to twenty minutes a day, five or six days a week (different muscles on each of the days), when I had very little time due to work or other commitments. At those times however, I had my own gym in my home or apartment, so I could still get in a good workout. It was even possible to include some Cardio-aerobics. This is simply not possible by exercising only a couple of times a week, for a few minutes each time. They are trying to sell you dreams again!
The CTTC Exercise Program has been designed to be as efficient and time-saving as possible, while still providing you with an effective, quality, full-body workout, which also includes an efficient, fat-burning, health-building aerobics program.
As your CTTC Exercise program (with weights) becomes more specific to your needs, it will become even shorter in duration, but there are limits to how little you can do and still realize quality results.
My record has been a program of 90 minutes per week in which I lost 22 pounds (10 kg) in 9 weeks while actually gaining some muscle at the same time. Not easy, but certainly doable…if you have the right information!
Actually, I will admit that it is possible to get a reasonably good, full-body workout in fifteen to twenty minutes, two to three times a week, which even includes some aerobic conditioning as well. You can read about it in Chapter 13 of The CTTC Book.
Learn from people who have already been successful at what you are seeking to accomplish!
Myth Number 5
You need to exercise for 1½ – 2 hours a day, 5 – 6 days a week to achieve good results.
First of all, you can either exercise for a long time, or you can exercise intensely, but you cannot exercise intensely for a long time.
If you don’t believe this, then try running all-out 100-yard dashes with short rest periods in between, and see how long you can hold out. If you could run six 100-yard dashes, each lasting twenty seconds, then you would have actually exercised for a total of only two minutes. The whole thing, including rest periods, would last for less than ten minutes, but I don’t think you would be looking forward to a further one hour and fifty minutes of exercise.
The longer you exercise, the lower the intensity of the exercise has to be.
The CTTC Workouts are not maximum intensity and they should last only about one hour, (including the warm-ups and cool-downs), but you will know that you have truly exercised when you have finished one. Then, the next time someone tells you that they exercise for two hours, you will have to laugh.
To answer the second part of this myth: Under normal circumstances, we mortals should never exercise with weights and/or intense aerobics for more than four days a week, and never more than two days in a row. Exercise (intensely) more than this and you will enter “the realm of diminishing returns.”
This means that you will be exercising more, with very minor results as your reward. This is the domain of professional and elite athletes again. For the rest of us, it is a waste of time and energy that could be much better spent enjoying life.
Or, if you exercise like this long enough and often enough, you will over-train, and you will then enjoy negative results (including sickness and/or injury) for all your extra efforts. Neither one of these is good.
Myth Number 6
Doing lots of reps with light weights is the best way to “tone up.”
First of all, what exactly is “toning up”? I hear this term all the time, but very few people are able to explain to me what it means.
Toning up actually refers to improving the “tonus”…or quality…of your muscles. Tonus is the degree of tension a muscle keeps when it is in a relaxed state. The more tension (tonus) a muscle has, the firmer it is when you are standing relaxed. I very affectionately refer to ladies with a high degree of tonus as “hardbodies”. Get it ladies?
Quality muscle = a firm body!
Toning up is used instead of the correct term, “improving muscle quality,” because the word “muscle” still has a negative connotation for many people…especially women. They associate the word with looking like Arnold Whatzizname, but tonus has nothing to do with the size of a muscle. It refers to the quality of a muscle, no matter what the size.
Doing lots of repetitions with light weights is not an efficient way to create quality muscle (tone up). It does not work the muscles hard enough. Using different amounts of weight for different numbers of reps, in a carefully planned exercise program, is a much better, faster, longer lasting and more effective way of creating quality muscle (toning up).
The CTTC Exercise Program does this. Try it. You will be very pleased with your new quality (toned) muscle and how much better it makes you look…and feel…pun most definitely intended!
Myth Number 8
Women should train differently than men.
For the most part…NO! See Chapter 15 of The CTTC Book.
Myth Number 15
If you stop exercising, your muscles will turn to fat.
I only have three things to say about this one.
First: If it is possible to completely change the molecular structure of something (muscle to fat) by doing nothing (not exercising), then I am going to stop working for a living and just wait for all my worthless stuff to turn into valuable things. And then I will be stinking rich, because I really have a lot of worthless stuff.
Secondly: If people with muscles become over-fat by their muscles turning into excess body fat, then from where do over-fat people who never had much muscle in the first place get their excess body fat? I could be wrong here, but I have a sneaky suspicion that they both acquire their excess body fat in the same ways. Yummy, yummy!
Thirdly: Why would you ever stop doing some type of exercise anyway? So you can become over-fat and unhealthy? Are you going to stop bathing and brushing your teeth as well?
Myth Number 16
The Mythical Balanced Diet
I love this one. This is the “magic bullet” solution that you will still get from lots of doctors, nutritionists, dietitians, and other “experts” out there who obviously know next to nothing about how people really eat, much less about how to control body fat. “You need to eat a balanced diet.” they say.
Heck, I can also offer advice like this. Are you unhealthy? My advice to you is: “Get healthy.”
That wasn’t too difficult, was it? Now go do it, on your own and with no information to help you succeed.
In a study done in The Netherlands, where the availability of fast-food is still much less than in America (but catching up fast, with very visible results), average people were asked if they ate a healthy, varied (balanced) diet.
More than 80% answered yes to the question. However, when the diets of these 80% were actually analyzed, less than 2% met the minimum RDA’s for nutrients.
According to other research, most people only routinely eat a few different foods…and they generally cycle through all of them in about four days. That’s the truth about The Mythical Balanced Diet.
What the devil is a balanced diet anyway? Balanced what? Does a 200-pound man need to eat 200 pounds of food?
Is the balance the same for a marathoner as it is for an office worker, or do we all have to decide for ourselves what balanced is?
How do we do that if we are not experts in the field of nutrition? Even if we are nutrition experts, who has time to plan, prepare and eat a balanced diet every day?
And if it is so easy, why are there still so many over-fat doctors, nurses, nutritionists and dietitians running around?
This is not a vicious criticism of health professionals. This is just not their area of expertise. Doctors study injuries and diseases. They don’t have time to study health, much less nutrition. Building health is an entirely different field of study than diagnosing and treating injuries and diseases.
Nutritionists and dietitians mostly study nutrition for sick people. They also don’t have much time left over for studying health-building nutrition, much less performance nutrition for exercisers and athletes.
Thank goodness this is changing and we are now slowly beginning to get more health professionals instead of only disease professionals.
Of course everyone has to tell you to ask your doctor. That is to cover their butts against lawsuits. I also have to say that in this book for the same reason…in fact, I will say it again here.
Always ask your doctor before undertaking (or is that a bad choice of a word?) any exercise or nutrition program.
Very simply, a balanced diet doesn’t exist in our rat-race world. The best we can do is to strive to eat reasonably well…as often as is humanly possible. This simply means cutting most of the garbage out of our daily diets, most of the time, and choosing higher quality foods, more often, as is explained in Chapter 13 of The CTTC Book where you will learn about my 80/20 Rule.
Myth Number 17
You become over-fat by eating too much fat.
Not completely true. Certain kinds of fats will actually help you to lose excess body fat. You will find the real reasons for becoming over-fat in Chapter 5 of The CTTC Book.
Myth Number 20
You don’t need to use nutritional supplements to be really healthy.
This is absolutely true…if you happen to be what I call a “biological freak”…having been born with all the physical requirements for optimal health (see Chapter 16).
If this is the case, then you probably don’t need to do anything extra to stay healthy and you will probably live to be 100…no matter what you do.
And if you are that lucky, you will undoubtedly win the lottery sometime soon too, so you might as well quit your job right now, sit back, and wait for the big bucks to start rolling in. The question now is: Do you really feel that lucky?
The rest of us are certain that we are not that lucky, so we will keep our jobs and, yes, we do need some extra help to strengthen our immune systems and our bodies, and to keep them strong (see Chapter 13 of The CTTC Book). For us it is the difference between being not too sick…and being truly healthy.
I refuse to argue with people anymore about the necessity and benefits of basic nutritional supplements. The scientific and medical evidence proving the necessity and/or benefits of the basic nutritional supplements that I recommend is so overwhelming that arguing about it is like arguing whether you need to eat healthy, nutritious foods or not.
Yes, you can survive by eating only fast-food, but for how long? And take a good look at the people who do. Is that something you want to aspire to in your life? How good is your health insurance?
Most people are not aware that in 1998 the RDA Committee of the US Academy of Sciences at long last caved in to the overwhelming amount of positive scientific research and finally had to admit that the average American diet (or that of any other country for that matter) does not contain enough vitamins and minerals.
It took them almost sixty years to admit it, but their recommendation now is for most Americans to take basic nutritional supplements. Unfortunately, most doctors, nutritionists, and dietitians are still ignoring this advice.
And remember, according to some “experts,” if you eat a balanced diet, you won’t need nutritional supplements anyway (read Myth #16 again).
Myth Number 22
You don’t need nutritional supplements to realize good results from an exercise program.
This is also absolutely true.
However, you do need nutritional supplements to realize optimal results from your exercise program. You also need nutritional supplements to realize these optimal results as quickly and as efficiently as possible.
The nutritional supplements you really need are basic and inexpensive. There are others which are not really necessary, but which are just so darned convenient, inexpensive, and time-saving that I also recommend them. See Chapter 13 of The CTTC Book for more information and my recommendations.
Good, effective nutritional supplements can take your body a step beyond what it is normally capable of achieving, and do it faster and more efficiently.
Would you consider getting rid of your computer, internet, or calculator? No! Why not? We used typewriters, libraries, and pencil and paper for many more years than we have had personal computers, internet, and calculators and that worked just fine, so we obviously don’t need these unnecessary gadgets either…do we? Nope…not if you are satisfied with the pace of working with manual typewriters, doing your research at the library, typing and sending each letter individually by snail-mail (yup, we don’t need e-mail either)…and so on… and so on…and so on!
A calculator makes calculating faster, easier, and greatly lessens the chance of making a mistake in your calculations. Nutritional supplements…including vitamins and minerals (when used properly) do exactly the same. They take a lot of the guesswork out of your nutrition planning.
Basic nutritional supplements (used properly) will enhance your exercise results, make building and maintaining your health faster, easier, more effective and more efficient. It is called progress, people.
“But my doctor says that nutritional supplements don’t work anyway.” Then gently remind your doctor that it took The Physician’s Desk Reference (which is a doctors’ encyclopedia of the most commonly used drugs) a couple of decades to admit that anabolic steroids increase strength and muscle mass.
Apparently, someone forgot to tell the athletes this so, not knowing any better, they just kept getting bigger and stronger during those many years…without the doctors’ permission. How disrespectful was that? Read Myth #16 above again…same story…different subject.
After that you can ask your doctor how many nutrition courses he took during his many years of medical school. You might be very surprised at his answer. Many medical schools still do not even offer courses in nutrition to doctors.
Why not? Because nutrition is not what doctors study in medical school. They are too busy studying about diseases and injuries. Health-building nutrition is a completely different (but very closely related) subject.
I, along with millions of other athletes, have been safely and successfully using basic nutritional supplements for many decades. So, after you are finished arguing with us as to whether the basic nutritional supplements are safe and effective or not, we can argue as to whether the world is flat…or not. There are still people who believe that as well…and I’ll bet that they are also afraid of flying.