Top 4 Reasons Why Women SHOULD lift weights
One of the most common misconceptions for any woman looking to loose weight or get leaner is that lifting weights will make them “manly” or “bulky” and that being a slave to the treadmill is the quickest way to achieve the body they desire.
In todays social media era of female fitness icons many of the images we see are actually achieved through minimal cardio, weight lifting and a lot more calories than a herbal life shake. Weight lifting for women is the healthiest and most sustainable way of achieving a body for life and below are my top 4 reasons why.
1. Cardio alone is not the answer
If your current gym regime consists of hours of cardio, initially you will see a weight loss due to a calorie deficit being created However, in the long term your body will simply adapt to the cardio and it will become less and less effective at burning body fat.
Over time your body will lower your metabolic rate to compensate for all the cardio.
2. Building muscle is the answer
If you incorporate regular weight training into your exercise regime, over time you will build muscle and therefore improve your body composition. This means your scale weight may stay the same but you will have more muscle and less body fat. (Another reason why the scales can be deceiving!)
Therefore, the increased muscle mass in your body will speed up your metabolism making the body more efficient at burning fat… Hurrah!!
3. You WON’T get BULKY!
This must be up there as the biggest gym myth going, along with “no carbs after 6pm”! The main anabolic hormone involved in the muscle building process is called testosterone; women have 15-30 times LESS than males. This means building muscle is literally 15-30 times harder! (Sorry ladies).
Think how many men go to the gym regularly, and try to build muscle, and fail! Yes, it’s even harder for women. Confusion sometimes arrives from the fact that after strength training, someone may feel “swole” from the training. This is the body’s short-term inflammatory response to exercise as blood is sent to the working muscle in order to aid recovery, which is only temporary.
4. Stronger muscles = Stronger bones
As you age your muscle mass and bone mass will naturally decrease as part of the ageing process. Postmenopausal women are at a greater risk of osteoporosis because of a reduction in the hormone estrogen. Regular weight training will not only help you maintain muscle mass but also keep your bones healthier and stronger, helping to prevent the onset of osteoporosis.