The fitness space can be misleading, so let’s get some things straight. We want to demystify some common myths, so over the next few minutes we’ll be dropping some truth bombs about weight training, protein consumption and our plant-based pals… read on.
FIRST UP – The Incredible Bulk
Myth: Weight training will make me “bulky”
Short answer: Bullsh*t.
We hear this a lot, and it is one of the main reasons why many women have shied away from weight training in the past. Bicep curls are not going to make you look like the Rock, not even the Pebble. Whilst there’s nothing wrong with that (each to their own), it is basically untrue. In fact, certain studies show that in the early stages of training, many of the changes in our body are mainly our brain and muscles just getting better at talking to each other (1).
Another study shows that in over 9 weeks of strength training, women saw an average increase in lean body mass (the weight of your bones, muscles, organs, water…everything but the fat) of 3%. To put that in perspective, if you weigh 60kg, you would have only gained 1.8kg of lean body mass (2), and strength training can increase your bone density, so all of that weight may not even be muscle (3). And after the initial training stages, it gets harder and harder to gain muscle. Gaining muscle depends on your training type, hormones and your body structure.
WE all clear? Good…let’s carry on
Myth: Protein Powder causes bloating, gas and stomach cramps
We get enough cramps as it is, so it would be sheer madness to consumer something that is claimed to induce them, right? Well, wrong, actually. It’s all down to the quality of protein you’re taking. If you read our Why BOXD is best blog post, you’ll have probably seen us talk about this before. Whey Protein Concentrate is what most companies opt for when making their protein, and this protein contains lactose, the sugars derived from milk. This is probably what is causing those cramps and bloating, a slight (or not so slight) intolerance to lactose. This is why we at BOXD chose to use Whey Protein Isolate, which has virtually no lactose (4), keeping you bloat, gas and cramp free! How marvellous. [Oh, and to our plant based babes, don’t worry, ew got your back too…]
Myth: Work One Muscle Group per session
When you hear gym bros moaning about LEG DAY….well, really you don’t benefit from just working out one muscle group at a time. The average person ideally needs to work out all muscle groups, and that isn’t limited to one a day. In fact, performing compound exercises (engaging more than one muscle group like squats, deadlifts, lunges etc), can actually help with weight loss and muscle growth as well (5). So you heard it here – the more [muscles] the merrier.
Myth: Vegan Protein isn’t as good as whey protein
Oh yeah, the anti-vegan brigade. We always hear certain PTs shouting about how you should be eating 86 chickens a day or whatever to get all the protein you need to reach hypertrophy [where your muscles actually grow] Well, not true.
The root of this braying pro-whey brigade, is probably down to the popularity of whey protein that has dominated the market for so long now. Whilst whey is an excellent and cost-effective source of protein, it’s not the be all and end all when it comes to getting our protein fix. There are tons of non-dairy alternatives out there that vegans can get in on and they are just as effective. Studies have found that there has been no significant differences in muscle growth or performance between whey and non-dairy alternatives (6, 7). We use high grade pea protein to keep you looking and performing your absolute best. So it doesn’t always have to be Whey or the highway. [sorry…]
At BOXD, we are made up of a team of Sports Scientists, Chartered Nutritionists. We want to make sure that we’re not just putting up the pseudo-science you’d see on other sites. If any of our staff put anything on our blog that relates to your health, you can bet that it is backed by evidence-based science! It always will be. That’s our commitment to you.