Strength and Femininity are not mutually exclusive. In the gym, most women focus their energy on cardiovascular exercises, not weights. For whatever reason, many women seem to avoid lifting weights. Why is that? Here are some compelling reasons as to why women should be lifting...
The more muscle you have, the higher your metabolic rate. This is because muscle is a metabolic tissue. A study found that women who partook in strength training 3 times a week for a course of two months gained nearly 1 kilo of muscle and lost over 1.5 kilos of fat. At rest, for every 1 kilo of muscle, your body will burn 12 calories per day (1). This is roughly 3x more calories than a kilo of fat. Thus, strength training will increase your basal metabolic rate (BMR) and aid in fat loss.
Improved Metabolism with Age
It is a sad, but well known, truth that with age comes a decrease in metabolism. Research has shown that at as early as he age of 30, women start to lose muscle mass with up to 8% decrease every decade, ultimately reducing their metabolism (2). Through a full-body training regime it is possible to increase your muscle mass, and keep your metabolism high as you age. You may not be able to increase your metabolism as you get older but through weight training you can certainly maintain it.
You Will not Become Bulky!
You see these female body builders on social media and presume if you lift a few weights you are going to look like that. These women have such a strict diet and training regime in order to build their body. If it were as easy as lifting a few weights to look like that, the sport of body building would cease to exist. Women also have significantly less testosterone, the main hormone responsible for building muscle mass, than men, therefore it is much more difficult to build muscle in that way.
Reduced Risk of Osteoporosis… whaaat?!
When lifting heavy weights, your bones are put under enormous stress, this can increase their bone density, reducing your risk of developing osteoporosis (3). What’s more, is strength training tends to target the bones that are more likely to fracture, including your hips, spine and wrists.
So, What is Stopping You?...
Approaching weights in the gym can be daunting and does often put people off. Just ask a member of staff how to use the equipment. Alternatively, there are thousands of YouTube tutorials showing you how to use equipment.
If you are looking for more workout ideas, have a browse through our fitness blog for some inspiration!