I don’t know if any of you notice the same things that I do when scrolling through the news feed of my phone, but something that’s really stood out to me lately are headlines that include the word “Best” or some other synonym when referencing what types of exercises we should be doing or what types of foods we should be eating. This is being applied to ANYTHING food/fitness related it seems like. These are the best foods to eat for burning fat….this is the best exercise routine for gaining muscle…..which is best, steady state cardio or interval training…..The list seems to go on and on.
At first, I was interested to see what these articles were about, because, who wouldn’t want to know what the BEST solution to help you reach your fitness goals is? It didn’t take me long to become disinterested in these articles for two reasons. Here’s the first reason. The articles that I had read only seemed to reference one study. I don’t think that ONE study really proves much of anything. Sure, it may be a great start, but exercise science and nutrition is definitely evolving. We may think we’ve figured it out, but there’s a lot more learning and discovering for us to do in both of these fields.
Here’s the second reason why I became disinterested in these articles. Is it true that a certain exercise or exercise routine may be best to trim fat or build muscle? Sure. Could be. I don’t know. Is it possible that eating a certain way could be the key to a lean, muscular physique? Why, not? But, is that what’s BEST FOR YOU to achieve YOUR ideal goals? What I mean by that is this; for example, HIIT training has shown to increase EPOC and continue to burn calories way long after you’re done at the gym. It’s a great workout and can be done quickly. I love this type of workout myself. This may be “Best” to achieve a certain result, but adherence is key. These workouts are punishing and really suck sometimes.
Some workouts, exercises, or nutrition plans are just not realistic. And, everyone has a different idea of what’s realistic. I think that the Best workout, exercise, nutrition plan, etc., is the one that is going to help you achieve and sustain your goals long term. Maybe heavy, low rep deadlifts followed by wind sprints will be the next thing touted as the ideal workout plan. If it sucks and you hate it, you’re not going to stick with it long term. Therefore, is it really the best workout? Find something that you enjoy doing. Maybe you enjoy lighter deadlifts with long steady runs instead. In this case, the latter is the best workout routine for you. Do what you love. Eat what you love (now, we do need some good nutrition habits….everything in moderation!!). So, what is your Best workout/exercise/nutrition plan? Do you want to follow the headlines, or do you want to succeed long term and enjoy your own fitness path?