Working with and training thousands of women over 17 years I am never surprised when I encounter resistance from women about including resistance training as part of their workout regime.
I don’t just advise it, I insist on it. If you truly want to change your body to be lean and toned then you must embrace it. First and foremost, resistance training and weight training are not exactly the same thing. Weight training is simply one of many options when it comes to resistance training (which by mere definition is training against a resistance). So resistance training could be weights, kettlebells, bodyweight, suspension straps, bands, balls and so on. Pilates and yoga are forms of resistance training with a specific focus. The point here is that to really shape and strengthen your body and have well rounded fitness you need to be doing some form of resistance work. Cardio works your heart and is damn important but we cannot neglect the muscles, joints and bones which are just as critical.
The BIG question:
So hopefully all of you ladies that are reading this are with me so far but I already know the question that is coming. ‘But won’t resistance training make me BIGGGGGGGG and BULLLLLKY…….?!’ The answer is NO! Females only have about 10% of the levels of testosterone that men have so it’s almost impossible to gain a significant amount of lean muscle tissue. Testosterone is the main muscle building hormone and it’s the key hormone your body needs for overall muscle growth.
Females only have about 10% of the levels of testosterone that men have so it’s almost impossible to gain a significant amount of lean muscle tissue.
The benefits are real ladies so, as always, I’m going to be too! Crazily less than 20% of women that have a gym membership include some weight training into their routine…?!
So if you are one of these women that spends hours doing cardio and being super strict with your nutrition only to be falling short with your desired results, it is time to change your mindset, change your training routine and change your results for the better.
The 7 REAL BENEFITS of RESISTANCE TRAINING FOR WOMEN:
1. Lose Body Fat and burn more calories
Resistance training tones and shapes lean muscle. When we have lean, toned muscle we increase the speed of our metabolism. A higher metabolism means that you will burn more calories all day long. We often think about burning calories just while we are working out, but the more lean muscle we have the more calories we burn just as we are getting around day to day even when we are sleeping.
2. Gain Strength without Bulking
One of the most common reasons women avoid weight training is because they are afraid of “bulking.” As I’ve already mentioned, this is a misconception as it physiologically cannot happen. Don’t confuse an increase in strength with an increase in size.
3. Decrease Risk of Osteoporosis
Resistance training not only strengthens your muscles; it strengthens your bones. Resistance training increases bone density, which reduces the risk of fractures and broken bones, can increase spinal bone density to create a strong and healthy spine and is critical to combat the natural attrition in this as we age.
4. Reduce Risk of Injury
Resistance training also increases strength in connective tissues and joints. Strong joints, ligaments, and tendons are important to prevent injury and can relieve pain from osteoarthritis. Strengthening muscles and connective tissue will make injury from daily tasks and routine exercise less likely and can even improve sports performance.
5. Improve Posture and Reduce Back Pain
Resistance-training will strengthen your back, shoulders, and core, helping to correct bad posture so that you can stand taller, with shoulders back and spine straight. A stronger back and core will also help prevent lower back pain.
6. Enhance Mood & Reduce Stress
Exercise and weight-training release endorphins. Endorphins are neurotransmitters that prevent pain, improve mood, and fight depression. An increase in endorphins naturally reduces stress and anxiety. Endorphins also stimulate the mind, improving alertness and boosting energy. Weight-training can brighten your entire day or help you combat a bad one.
7. Keep it Fresh
The variety and options that comes with resistance training is endless. HIIT, circuits, TRX, stability, functional group session – 28 by ME and so on. To continually change our body, we must continually challenge our body and to stay motivated we want to keep our mind challenged and stimulated too!
Let me finish with this…
The apprehension and fear that you have, I understand.
In fact, I even experienced it the other day with my little 12 year old, Eve. I asked her if she wanted to do some fun workouts with mum & I once mum starts training more post baby. I casually said ‘to help you get fit and strong for school sport next year?’ as she’s heading into her first year of high school. When I mentioned the word ‘strong’, she froze like she’d seen a ghost and started shaking her head backwards and forwards as if to say ‘no, no, no’. So I asked her “why not?” and she said “I don’t want to be strong. Strong means big”. After explaining to her what I’ve just explained to you she is now really excited for some fun workouts and I hope you are too.