Why Weight Training is Important for Women
The benefits of lifting weights — also called weight training, strength training or resistance training — include stronger muscles, a stronger heart, a much leaner physique, a longer life, and a body better able to support your everyday needs and activities. Women, however, still tend to shy away from this beneficial form of exercise.
Ladies, does the mere idea of weightlifting scare you?
“I don’t want to lift weights because they’ll make me too big and bulky.” For how many of you is this the reason you’ve never attempted weight training?
It seems to be many a man’s dream to have big, bulky muscles. Why is it then, that men, whose bodies naturally contain much greater amounts of testosterone and growth hormone, lift weights yet DON’T get big and bulky?
It’s true! Unless they are supplementing with dangerous and unhealthful steroids or similar substances, most men do not naturally bulk up hugely by lifting weights regularly. And neither will most women.
The idea that women get big, ugly muscles from weight training is a complete misconception.
The fact of the matter is that women must lift weights in order to achieve the lean, sculpted bodies they dream of having. If a woman does happen to have the genetic disposition to bulk up quickly, there are easy ways to alter a workout to prevent this extra muscle size, while still increasing strength and rapidly burning fat.
The idea that weightlifting causes insanely huge muscle buildup is largely a creation of the media. It’s true that some women weightlifters takes steroids, and these hormones do make them look very masculine. The average woman who weight trains, however, will simply achieve a slim, healthy body without adding unwanted muscle mass.
Let’s start by discussing the basics of weight training:
Weight training involves controlled lifting and working out with weights. Two basic terms related to weightlifting are “rep” and “set.” A rep describes the complete act of raising and lowering a weight during a single act of exercise. A set describes the number of times a particular rep is performed.
For example, when a person does five reps of a squat, they squat down and stand up five times, continuously, before stopping and either moving on to another exercise or finishing their workout. Those five squats would equal one set. A balanced weight-training session will include several sets of different exercises.
Your goal as either a beginner, intermediate, or advanced weight lifter should be to exhaust your muscles in the shortest time frame – that simply means that when you lift a weight, you should lift a heavy enough weight to exhaust your muscles doing only 10 – 15 reps.
And you should do this exercising pattern about 3 days each week – with at least 24 hour of rest after each workout.
Ladies, I encourage you: Let go of your preconceived ideas about weight training. Do not fear it. Embrace your weightlifting potential!
You will benefit so much more from it than from spending hours on that piece of cardio equipment alone.