Q: Dear Abby, I have this friend who looks awesome and does nothing but walk on the elliptical for 8 hours a week and eats small slices of bread for breakfast lunch and dinner. She looks awesome and I really want to look like her! You are telling me to do the complete opposite! She says I will get bulky by lifting weights. How do I know who to believe?
-Confused and scared with only 43 days left until Memorial Day weekend at Dewey Beach, DE, the Memorial Day Weekend Capital of the World
A: Dear Confused, It is only natural to have no idea what to believe when it comes to looking awesome at the beach. There is more misinformation surrounding fat loss than any other subject in the world. This particular instance points to something I like to call the ‘freak factor.’ Simply put, your friend is a freak. It’s not a bad thing, it’s awesome for her. Bad for those that try to copy her.
The thing most people don’t get is that what works for one of these outliers, probably isn’t going to work for 99% of the population. It’s like copying the workout from a magazine that supposedly was used by a celebrity. I don’t care how many super crunch twists Jennifer Aniston did during her workout program, she looked like a movie star beforehand. Most likely, so did your friend.
Now if your friend started off 30 lbs overweight and supposedly lost it doing slow cardio then I would at least have to start asking questions. But I’m going to find an answer and it’s not that the elliptical burned it all off. I’m going to dig around and find out what changed in her eating habits. You don’t lose weight doing cardio, period. Most likely she stopped eating McDonald’s 5 times a week and cut her carbohydrate intake DOWN to 3 slices of bread per day from an entire loaf. Yes, decreasing carbohydrate intake from your status quo will cause fat loss. Even if your diet isn’t perfect, any improvement is going to impact your weight!
Now on to who to listen to. I’ll steal one from Alwyn Cosgrove, whose regarded as one of the foremost fat loss experts in the world. Alwyn always says listen to people that get paid to get results. Does your friend help countless individuals safely achieve their fat loss goals? Does she get paid top dollar to do it? I don’t even care if she’s a personal trainer, does she get results for a large number of people? No? She just happens to look awesome? Then her fitness advice doesn’t count.
See video for example:
So in short, yes, there are people that can do everything wrong and still get results. Does that make it the right way for you to get results? Absolutely not. Listen to real professionals.