Ladies – it’s time to conquer your fear of dumbbells, overcome your addiction to aerobics and discover the INCREDIBLE world of weight training for women!
I strongly believe all women should lift weights.
And I am not talking about lifting little 1kg dumbbells either… I mean BIG weights, with POWERFUL exercises like Squats, Deadlifts, Presses and Rows.
Take a minute to read these 5 great reasons why and hopefully you will be converted!
1. It will make you firmer and leaner…
Whilst cardio helps to burn fat, it does little to increase your “muscle tone”. The proper definition of a “toned muscle” is a muscle that is partially switched on. This partial contraction makes your muscles feel firmer and look leaner, even when you aren’t working out.
And what is the best way to increase muscle tone? Weight training… ideally lifting a weight that fatigues your muscles within 10 to 20 reps. Want to wave goodbye to your bingo wings? Choose bench presses and tricep kickbacks. Want to firm up your flabby thighs? Weighted squats are a must!
2. It will make you slimmer and NOT bulkier…
If you avoid weight training because you think it will make you bulky, think again. Women lack the essential hormone required for large amounts of muscle gain… testosterone! So unless you are planning on injecting any time soon, stop worrying about bulking up, you really won’t.
In fact, weight training will help you to lose body fat. Each pound of muscle you build up has little impact on your size but a huge impact on your resting metabolism – up to 50 extra calories a day! This means that women who lift weights burn more calories, even while they are sleeping.
3. It will make you stronger and more confident…
Unlike men, women aren’t born with natural strength, so if anything women are set to benefit far more from weight training. By challenging your muscles with progressively heavier weights, you will see your body start to adapt and get stronger. It’s a huge confidence boost!
This increased strength makes day to day activities like walking up stairs, lifting heavy bags or carrying children that much easier. When you can dead lift your own body weight you will have no problem picking up adults, let alone a small children!
4. It will help you to improve your posture and balance…
A weak, slouching posture often leads to saggy breasts and a pot belly. By following a well designed weight training programme you will strengthen your postural muscles – in particular your middle and lower back – pulling your shoulders back, lifting your chest and flattening your stomach.
A strong, balanced posture not only makes you look much slimmer, it also strengthens your joints and reduces your risk of injury and back problems as you age. If you choose functional strength exercises you also improve your balance and core stability, preventing falls.
5. It will reduce your risk of osteoporosis…
Osteoporosis is a disease of bone that leads to an increased risk of fracture. Women are far more prone to osteoporosis because they have less bone mass than men and take in less calcium. The menopause also increases the risk of breaks as falling levels of estrogen leads to reduced bone density.
Research has proven that in the same way your muscles adapt with weight training, so do your bones. By lifting weights regularly women can actually increase their bone density, in particular spinal bone density. This will dramatically improve your quality of life in later years.
And finally…if you have been converted, why not try kettlebell training? It is the perfect form of weight training for women! You only need one kettlebell to get started and you can even do it at home.