Lies fitness instructors love to tell to cheer us on

We’ve written before about motivational sayings and videos and about the lies cyclists tell.

But cyclists aren’t the only liars in the fitness world. My favorite are group fitness instructors who say ridiculously untrue things all the spirit of motivation. Personally I’m such a literal thinker I can’t get past the impossibility.

I think spin instructors might be the worst!

Here’s my two favorite outright lies yelled loudly in the name of motivation:

You can do anything for 30 seconds.

No actually I can’t. I really can’t.

You’ve done it before, you can do it again.

No. Sometimes once is really all you’ve got.


The gif above “say what?” comes from another webpage of ridiculous things fitness instructors have said, with my apology for their ableist language. We don’t use crazy talk around here.

Here’s my fave from their list: “”‘Now there’s a mist. You’re cycling through the mist. How’s that mist feel on your face? What’s that mist telling you?!’ The class was inside.”

And here’s more Ridiculous things gym instructors say.

Now it’s your turn. What are your favorite things fitness instructors say that just aren’t true?

8 thoughts on “Lies fitness instructors love to tell to cheer us on

  1. Upon hearing I was a in Italy and comment I f on how the food is so fresh, my fitness instructor said “you don’t gain weight when the food is so fresh”. Yes. She said that. To my face. *jawdrop*

  2. From a spin instructor in a class I attended exactly once at a club I no longer go to: “We’re going to sprint now, for the next five minutes”.

    No. No we’re not. No one can sprint for five minutes. Because that’s not what “sprint” means. It’s an actual analytic truth that you can’t sprint for five minutes. Sigh…

  3. Those are some ridiculous comments. As a fitness instructor I don’t know why people make up these random things. However, some of the ones from yoga are things that we use a lot to teach with. Like the Divine in me sees, honors, and reflects the Divine in you is the definition of namaste. Grounding your feet into the ground is necessary for balance and grounding poses. I think some people aren’t always as familiar with yoga language and therefore some of the cues that yoga instructors use can seem a little crazy. But no one should ever try to Sprint for 5 minutes! 🙂

    1. “breathe into your armpit”…. Yeah, I don’t know what that means, and it sounds gross, to boot.

  4. I’ve never heard anything like this from my weight training instructors! But I would never take a fitness class like the ones mentioned here–spinning, aerobics, etc.–because of the loud obnoxious music. It’s too bad the weight room is in the same building.

  5. I do use the “you can do anything for X time” on myself lol. Looking at the clock in Krav Maga I saw it was 5 minutes to the end of class and I felt like I couldn’t go on. I tell myself you can do anything for only 5 minutes! Yeah, not true, but it does help me.

    I can’t think of any I’ve experienced in person but from a Jillian Michaels video (before I knew anything about who she was. It was a free workout video on netflix) she made a comment about how it may feel like you can’t breathe but you can, so don’t stop…. uh, no, lots of people have conditions like asthma and ignoring the feeling of “I can’t breathe” can be very dangerous, even deadly.

  6. Favorite as a military cadet. PT instructor to class “ok on my word, half of you over there, half over on the other side and the other half in front of me – Go!”

  7. There must be more fun motivational shout outs from instructors…. let’s here those too. 🙂

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