June 15, 2022

The Health & Fitness Fads Laura Henshaw refuses to take part in

When it comes to health and fitness thereís no doubt that weíve all fallen victim to health and fitness trends that weíve seen plastered across our social media. Now Iím not saying theyíre all bad trends, however more often than not, a lot of them stem from our society being so heavily influenced and driven by diet culture and itís those trends that Iím most certainly not a fan of.

From my observations and experience I know that so many of these trends are planted and amplified to make us feel like weíre unworthy, not pretty or skinny enough and like we should be making changes to ourselves or our routines to become more ďsocially acceptableĒ. However, Iím here to tell you that that is absolutely NOT the case. You are perfectly imperfect the way you are and this what we preach at KIC.

If youíve fallen into the trap of fad health and fitness trends, youíre not alone. I remember being a victim to diet culture when I was in my late teens and early 20s and thinking that I had to eat a certain way or fit into a certain dress size to be worthy. In all honesty, I too ended up following some of the diet culture-y trends. However over time and since leaving the modelling world behind, Iíve been able to learn to move my body for ME and relish in the privilege of movement and how good it makes me feel.

Iíve learnt to love my body for what it does for me and Iíve learnt to nourish and fuel it with delicious and nutritious food. Actively practicing self love and filling my feed with content that steers clear of diet culture talk Iíve been able to more successfully stay clear of any fad health and fitness trends and messages which might cause me to question my body, mind and worthiness.

In particular I wanted to address some of the trends Iíve fallen victim to in the past (and are unfortunately still being preached) and why itís so important to remove yourself from the numbers, the stigmas and labelling food as good or bad. I want to empower you to move and fuel your body for YOU, to move in a way you enjoy and and because it makes you feel incredible.

So with that said, here are 5 fad health and fitness trends you should forget you ever heard because quite frankly, they do nothing but make you feel inadequate and I certainly donít want anyone to ever feel like that.

1. Working out to burn off what you ate

This is a HUGE no no. We do not ever need to be made guilty for enjoying one of lifeís many pleasures that is food! Food is fuel and is there to be enjoyed. It brings us together and most importantly gives us energy! Of course itís important to make smart choices to ensure our bodies are getting all the nutrients, vitamins and minerals to thrive but just because you ate a cookie or wanted another scoop of ice cream does not mean you need to run for an extra hour tomorrow.

2. Calorie Counting

Have you found yourself downloading a calorie tracker app to your phone? I most certainly have in the past and all it lead to was my precious time and energy being devoted to the numbers and overanalysing everything I put in my body. I canít stress how much more at peace youíll feel once you ditch the numbers and instead put emphasis on making sure youíre eating a balanced and nutritious diet with a range of protein, carbs and fats and eating more intuitively.

3. Strength is only good if you want to become a body builder

Far too often I hear women saying they avoid strength training for fear it will make them big and bulky and that is most certainly not the case! Not only does the female anatomy not have enough testosterone to grow muscles in the way men do, but unless youíre actively training and eating to increase your muscle mass, strength training is not going to alter your body like that. Strength training is actually so important as it helps to improve our musclesí strength, reduce our risk of injury and keep our bodies capable to take on our everyday life (the simple task of carrying your groceries will become even easier).

4. It's only a good workout if you sweat excessively

Sweat is not an indicator of a good workout. Let me repeat that, just because you didnít sweat much it DOES NOT mean you did not have a good workout. Sweat is the bodyís response when trying to cool down our core temperature and is also something that is unique to each person. Oh and the weather is also another HUGE factor that will contribute to how much we sweat. An upper body strength workout which may not raise your heart rate and get you sweaty in the way a HIIT workout does does not mean your workout was inadequate – a strength workout is purely a different style of movement focused on developing your muscles as opposed to improving your cardiovascular fitness.

5. Tracking progress on the scales

One of the worst things you can do is let your worth be determined by the scale. Not only is it absolutely irrelevant to who you are as a person but it is something that fluctuates consistently (especially for people who menstruate). So we simply cannot be attaching any value or sense of worth to this number – ever. Most importantly we should move because it makes us feel good and helps us to take care of our physical and mental health. However, if you are looking to track your progress ditch the scales and instead look to track your distances, times, weights, number of sessions or reps instead. Youíre worth is so more than any number on the scale.

Laura Henshaw