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Brad Schoenfeld, CSCS is the author of six books, including Sculpting Her Body Perfect, 28-Day Body Shapeover, and Look Great Naked. He’s certified by the National Strength and Conditioning Association and by both the American Council on Exercise and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America; he’s also been named “master trainer” by the International Association of Fitness Professionals.

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Look Great Naked! with Brad Schoenfeld, CSCS
by Brad Schoenfeld, CSCS, Fitness Expert

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"Believe none of what you hear and only half of what you see..."

Nowhere are these words of wisdom more apt than in the fitness field. Fact is, anyone can hang a shingle on their door and call themselves a personal trainer or fitness expert. No knowledge of exercise required.

The upshot: There are a lot of people out there perpetrating fitness myths that are at best misleading and at worst potentially dangerous. Here are three of the most common.

MYTH 1. You shouldn't lift weights until you get down to your ideal body weight.

TRUTH: This myth is based on the premise that adding muscle if you're overweight will make you look even fatter. This has resulted in a legion of people who try to diet their way to fat loss and just focus on cardio. Bad idea.

Fact is weight training helps to promote fat loss. Muscle mass increases your metabolic rate, which directly aids in the burning of fat as fuel. Studies have shown that for each pound of muscle add to your body, you burn an additional 30 to 50 calories a day at rest. Avoid weight training and your body actually cannibalizes its own muscle, suppressing metabolism and ultimately leading to a rebound effect.

Bottom line: If you want to lose weight and keep it off, lift weights! It's essential to sustaining fat loss and even more important than cardiovascular exercise for long-term weight maintenance.

MYTH 2. Performing abdominal exercises will give you a flat stomach.

TRUTH: Watch late night TV and you're bound to see an infomercial for some new ab blasting device that claims to whittle away your gut. Wishful thinking.

Fact is the body can't selectively target fat on any part of your body, including the midsection. ...    Continue

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@ 2:13am ET on August 12, 2008 then how do you get rid of fat around your mid section??
@ 12:38pm ET on October 13, 2008 I've lost hope in seeing those 6-packs. I'm very much convinced now that genetics play a huge role in that issue. I've had my BF percentage down to less than 9% and I've exercised my abs vigoursly but I've never seen "REAL" 6-packs. I admit my belly looked alot better but not the way I was dreaming of. Also mentaining that BF% is really hard as I have to go way underweight to reduce my BF to that percentage. Whenever I gain a couple of pounds my body creates more fat than muscles (although I'm doing weight training) and my tiny ab muscles diminsh.
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