The Two Most Dangerous Words In Fitness Are "Always" and "Never"
Beware of the use of “always” and “never”
“Never deadlift because it hurts your lower back”
“Always cut carbs to lose weight effectively”
“Never eat more than 3 meals a day”
“Never skip breakfast”
“Always have a dedicated chest day”
“Always do cardio after your weight training”
These types of statements are all over the fitness world. And more often than not, they’re followed by a pitch towards a way of thinking, a program, or some other service.
Using “always” and “never” ignores peoples’ individuality. No two people are the same and they won’t react the same way to similar methods. So how can we say that something will always work or that something never will?
It all boils down to critical thinking and asking questions about what is being put in front of you. It is never good to blindly accept something just because someone said it worked for them. They could 100% be telling the truth, but it’s still wrong to say it’s the only way to succeed.
I’ll give you a recent example. A few months ago Strongman competitor Robert Oberst made an appearance on the Joe Rogan podcast saying that deadlifts are dangerous and people shouldn’t do them. Since then, a movement has surfaced, especially on social media, condemning deadlifts and saying you should never do them under any circumstance.
This is a bad way of thinking and shows how easily misinformation spreads.
(If you’d like to listen to it yourself, the clip is easily found on YouTube)
Deadlifts can be dangerous, and they’re often prescribed in poor ways and they’re not designed for everyone. As much as I personally like deadlifts for my own goals, I don’t prescribe them to every one of my clients because sometimes it doesn’t make sense to.
That being said, there’s no better exercise that works the entire posterior chain of the body from your back all the way down to your glutes and hamstrings. It’s truly a full-body exercise that teaches proper lifting mechanics that can transfer to a myriad of activities outside of the gym.
There has to be a reason (hopefully an evidence-based one) for you to be doing what you’re doing. And it has to relate back to your personal goals.
For someone with a history of low-back pain with the goal of simply living a healthy, pain-free life, deadlifts are probably not a good idea.
For someone who has to do physical labour at work including lots of picking things up from the ground with a goal of getting stronger, deadlifts are a valuable tool.
And that’s the point. You have to analyze things on a case-by-case basis and judge whether something is right for you. There are rarely universal statements regarding fitness that are true 100% of the time. It’s a dangerous and slippery slope to be on.
As a coach, my job is to specifically tailor a program based on my clients and their specific needs. They’ve tried cookie-cutter programs that were apparently made to work for everyone, and realized it just doesn’t work for them.
When it comes to absorbing any information or fact, you need to use critical thinking and ask questions about it. With how much information is out there it can be overwhelming, but we need to protect ourselves against misinformation by arming ourselves with a better way of thinking.
The take-home point here is to question what you’re doing and if it’s right for you based on what you’re looking for. If you don’t have an answer for yourself, you may need to rethink your strategy.
To your good health,
Do you feel like you don’t have time for your own health? Do you feel like you’re spinning your wheels with low energy, a lack of confidence, an increase in aches and pains, and the frustration of not knowing how to stop the cycle?
I specialize in empowering busy professionals to look and feel stronger:
..without depriving themselves of the foods they love
..by eating what they want and lifting heavy in the gym
..so that they can have more energy, feel more confident and reverse their biological age
If you’re looking for that personal attention you need to reach your fitness goals, contact me or book a free consultation using the button below.