Another common misconception that females have when it comes to fitness is whether or not they should incorporate weights in their exercise program. A lot of females are scared to lift weights because they think they will end up looking like “Arnold”. There are so many things that are wrong with this theory I wouldn’t know where to begin. So here is what I’m going to do….I have put together a modified list of why it’s important for females to involve weight training in their fitness program. Hopefully these facts will answer some of the common questions women have when it comes to this topic.
1) You will gain overall strength:
This is probably the most obvious point. Strength is what everyone needs. You want to be independent when it comes to your daily activities. You want to be able to play with your kids, carry laundry or groceries up and down the stairs (what ever it may be that you lift often) Increasing your strength will make these tasks easier. You don’t want to strain every time you pick your 3 year old up do you? Without the proper strength, common tasks like this can put you at risk for injuries.
About 90% of women I see say they want to get “tone”. There is no such thing as tone. There is stronger, leaner, athletic and more dense (as far as muscle goes). The word “tone” is just a comfort word used to describe muscle density and gains in strength. But those seem to “manly” so we stick with “tone”. Throw it out! You want a lean, athletic look? Then it’s time to start training!
2) You will reduce the risk of common pains and injuries.
This is going off of the last point made in the section above. Weight training strengthens not only muscles but joints as well. The cartilage in your joints are broken down and made stronger which aids in joint stability. Strengthening the muscles of the body can also eliminate common pains. For example strengthening your lower back muscles have been proven to alleviate lower back pain…seems pretty obvious but this is good to know!
3) You will LOOSE FAT!
Sign me up! That’s right, muscles need fuel to survive, the strength gains that you have seen are a result of your weight training program. Now to keep those gains the muscles are going to require more fuel (calories) to stay strong. This in return raises your resting metabolism (this is the requirement your body has for fuel while at rest) and also your lean muscle. Often times you will hea a female say that she wants muscle tone but does not want to get “big”. Along with a proper diet you have to train with weights. You have to make those muscles harder if you want that definition.
4) Don’t worry, you won’t look like the dudes on the cover of FLEX Magazine…
It’s impossible for a female to get that big with out injecting some kind of cattle steroid into their body. Females were not designed with the chemicals they need to “get huge”. Research shows that females have 10-30% less hormones then men that cause muscle hypertrophy (muscle growth). So don’t be afraid to use weights in your training!
5) Weight training helps fight heart disease and diabetes!
Heart Disease: Research shows that weight training can improve your cardiovascular health by lowering LDL (bad cholesterol), Lower blood pressure and raise HDL (the good cholesterol)
Diabetes: Studies show that weight training can increases the ability of your body to utilize sugar by 23% within 4 months of training.
6) Weight training can help fight depression.
Everyone loves to feel good about themselves right. We all want confidence in the way we look and feel! Weight training will leave you feeling more confident and capable of doing things you could do before. Research shows that symptoms of depression have dropped more in weight training programs for the depressed than counseling! That’s awesome!!
So ladies go after the weights!