Are you a woman who has always stayed away from lifting weights? Here are the top 10 reasons why every woman should strength train.
When I go to the gym, most women that I see are using the treadmill, the stationary bike, or the elliptical.
These women are afraid of lifting heavy weights to strength train.
There is a fear that if they train with weights, they will become big and bulky like those female bodybuilders that they see in fitness magazines or on TV.
Well, I am here to let you know that this is far from the truth and why every woman should be lifting weights especially if they want to lose weight.
The main reason you as a woman cannot build a body like Arnold is because of the scientific fact that women have just about 5 to 10 percent testosterone that is found in men.
And testosterone is what gives the ability for men to build muscles.
Even with a higher testosterone, a natural male needs to work very hard with his workouts and nutrition to build any decent muscle.
So it is going to be even more difficult for a natural woman to build significantly big muscles.
And by natural, I mean men and women who do not use muscle enhancing drugs and are completely drug-free.
If you are such a women who has been avoiding strength training, please read on to know the top 10 reasons why you should be lifting weights.
Most women think that cardio is the way to go when you want to burn calories and try to lose some fat.
Well, strength training will also burn calories when you work out. Now it might not burn the same number of calories as the long, monotonous cardio. But it has some really cool side-benefits.
You not only burn calories when you strength train but also after your workouts. This is called as the after-burner effect where the metabolism remains elevated for 24 to 48 hours after a strength training session and burns more calories.
In addition, when you strength train, gradually you start gaining some muscle. And it is a well-known fact that the body requires more calories to maintain muscle.
This means that with the increase in muscle, your body’s metabolism will also increase and you will start burning more calories.
Lifting weights helps the brain release endorphins that are the feel-good chemicals.
So when you lift weights, it will make you feel good about yourself and improve your self-esteem.
Studies have also shown that strength training improves your ability to cope with depression, anxiety, and agitation.
So if you feel any of those issues, just hit the gym and you will feel much better after your workout session.
A major problem that many women young and old face is osteoporosis that causes degradation of the bones.
This is a major risk factor for potential fractures in females. The main reason for the weakening of bones is the absence of physical activity, especially load-bearing exercises.
Studies have shown that the best way to reverse the degradation of bone density in women is to consistently train with heavy weights.
The heart is a muscle and most people think that it’s only cardio that can strengthen the heart. But studies show that a combination of weight training and cardio strengthens the heart even further.
This is because as the muscles contract, the blood is sent back to the heart. The heart then pumps this oxygenated blood back into the muscles. And this keeps your cardiovascular system in good shape.
Strength training is also known to lower the amount of LDL or bad cholesterol and increase the amount of HDL or good cholesterol in the body.
This will strengthen your heart and protect it against several forms of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks and stroke.
Most women think that to get a good body that is toned and has curves you have to perform low-intensity cardio.
However, performing lots of cardio is actually bad for you because your body will become efficient and stop losing weight as it tries to hold on to the body fat fearing starvation.
Also while performing lots of cardio will make you lose weight this comes at the cost of losing both fat and muscle.
And this will turn you into a skinny fat person where you are skinny and fat at the same time. And that is not a good body to have.
Instead, when you train with weights, you will build muscle that will give you that toned look with the curves that you desire.
Strength training will help improve your immune system and lower your risk of several diseases.
We have already seen that strength training will help improve your cardiovascular system and lower your risk of heart diseases and stroke.
It will also improve your mental health and protect you from depression, Alzheimer’s disease, etc.
Weight training also improves your insulin sensitivity. This means your body is better suited to deal with carbohydrates and sugar in the body. And this will lower your risk of diabetes.
Even if you do have diabetes, weight training will help you control your diabetes perhaps even better than taking medication.
As you grow old, the fast-twich muscle fibers deteriorate. These are the muscle fibers that help you with your balance.
So if you can strengthen the with strength training, your balance will be improved.
This will protect you against falling and causing serious damage to your bones.
As we have seen, strength training helps the brain to release the “feel-good” endorphins that reduce stress.
Studies have shown that while spending hours on the treadmill will make you feel tired, a good strength training session will make you feel alive and full of energy.
So if you feel tired and out of energy, just hit the gym and you will see a boost in your energy levels after a good workout.
It is very essential for a woman to get at least 6 to 8 hours of quality sleep everyday.
Studies show that strength training helps to improve the quality of sleep as well as the duration of good sleep.
Weight training is also known to improve the sleep of people who suffer from insomnia.
So if you can’t get sleep at night, just try working out regularly and the quality of your sleep will definitely improve.
Bodies of women produce higher levels of estrogen and a little bit of testosterone.
Studies have shown that a slightly higher amount of testosterone boosts the sex-drive and well-being of a woman.
And it is very well known that strength training exercises will give a boost in testosterone levels in both men and women.
Now, don’t worry that you will start turning into a man with a beard with a small rise in testosterone. That is not going to happen.
On the contrary, the slight rise in testosterone will improve the quality of your sex life and keep you in a good mood throughout the day.
I hope you now know the top reasons why you as a woman should definitely include a good strength training program as part of your workout.
The benefits as you can see are far too many to ignore just by spending a couple of hours per week at the gym.
If you have any questions about strength training or fitness, please let us know in the comments below.
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