How many times have women been deterred from lifting weights or strength training because of the misconception that they will end up “bulky” or “massive”?
There are actually many benefits to women having a strength training routine as part of their exercise schedule. Increasing and maintaining adequate muscle mass is a fantastic way to keep body fat at bay and resistance training is the best way to build muscle mass. So we need to look at the benefits of this style of training and try to break the cardiovascular exercise only stigma that a lot of women have. Weight training is more than just a 3 times a week Body Pump class, so let’s look at some of the top reasons that women should be walking past the treadmill and hitting the weights floor.
It Makes You Stronger
This has just so many benefits in every day life whether it be looking after children, household routine or carrying the shopping. And your risk of injury is decreased.
Better Calorie Burn
The amount of muscle we have in our bodies directly determines our resting metabolic rate. This is the amount of calories we burn just keeping our body functioning at rest, your heart rate, breathing and temperature. As your lean muscle increases so does your resting metabolism so you will burn more calories throughout your day, which can result in a loss of body fat.
Speaking from personal experience, lifting weights can give me a feeling of empowerment, and improve my mood. Strength can be a confidence booster.
Stronger Bones And Decreased Risk Of Osteoporosis
Lifting weights not only trains your muscles, but it also trains your bones. There has been various studies that show weight training can improve bone density which in turn can have a direct impact on reducing injury as we age and also reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis.
Assist In Preventing Joint Pain
Get those squats down low, and your knees will thank you in the end. Strong muscles are better at holding your joints in their correct position.
It’s Good For The Heart
Weight training is also beneficial for your cardiovascular health. It can assist in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol in conjunction with your traditional cardio training. And as our heart is a muscle it makes sense to keep it strong and healthy.
Gaining Strength Without The Bulk
Women do not have the levels of hormone that cause muscle hypertrophy (increase in size). Weight training in women will create definition in the muscle and give the body tone rather than a dramatic increase in muscle size.
Group Training Is Also Becoming More Popular With Weight Training
Weight training doesn’t have to all be in the gym. A few pieces of equipment and a patch of lawn or outdoor area can be adequate and also a great way to get a weight session done with a group of people. This type of bootcamp or outdoor weight training can provide women with a sense of comradery and also give them a confidence boost in working as a team.
These are just a few benefits that women can achieve from incorporating a strength routine into their training regimen. It can be a social outlet also, and a big confidence booster, and who doesn’t want a defined figure for the summer months.
So girls, do not be deterred by the stigma that weight training makes women bulky, get amongst it on the weights floor. Burn more calories and have a rockin’ rig at the same time. You may even find that you enjoy the experience.
Written by Kylie Mills
Membership Consultant, Planet Fitness Lambton