Many people like to think that heavy weightlifting and bodybuilding, in general, is a guy’s thing. The general advice is that women shouldn’t engage in it, because they will become “bulky”.
They can train gymnastics, swimming, and other sports but not weight training. There is still a negative stigma in society about women who engage in heavy weightlifting.
Shucks! We’re here to prove them wrong.
I’m happy to say more and more women start training with weights and competing in bodybuilding competitions. I adore that fact, and I’m here to give you eight reasons why weightlifting is a no longer man-exclusive sport.
I will be talking about what benefits can women get from weight lifting and why should every woman engage in some type of resistance training.
Let’s get right into it.
1. You’ll Burn More Fat
The Turfs University did a study which separated overweight women in two groups. One group engaged in weight training twice a week, resulting in lost an average of 14.6 pounds of fat and gained 1.4 pounds of muscle in the process. The other group, which only dieted without weight training, lost only 9.2 pounds of fat but gained no muscle in the process.
There is a simple fact which can explain these results – when you do an intense weight-training program, your metabolism is elevated, and you continue to burn fat for several hours after you have finished your workout.
If you do a regular cardio exercise, you’ll stop burning fat shortly after you have finished your session.
2. You’ll Build Your Ideal Shape
Whether you want to look great in a dress, rock a bathing suit on summer vacation, or to have shapely arms in a tank top, weight training is the best way you can do that. It’s not only the best but also the fastest way you can reach your aesthetic goals. To achieve these goals, you should train with progressively heavier weights.
Some of you may think “But my goal is to lose fat”. It doesn’t matter. If you commit to losing fat by doing a lot of cardio and bring your fat percentage down into the teens (which is very lean for a woman), you won’t like what you see. You’ll have little to no muscle to work with on this body fat level, and you’ll be a skinny girl with no curves to be seen.
It’s essential for you to understand that your muscles will give you your desired shape. So if you want to be lean and look great in whatever dress you rock, lifting weights is the way to go.
It would be best if you aim to do at least three sessions a week for better results.
3. You’ll Strengthen Your Bones
As we age, our estrogen levels drop and this lead to postmenopausal women to be prone to osteoporosis. Estrogen is the chemical which is responsible for bone building.
Numerous studies show a positive correlation between resistance training and bone density. When your bones feel your muscles pulling, bone growth is stimulated. Women who lift weights regularly can have an increase in bone density and offset the bone loss.
4. You’ll Be In a Better Mood!
Women are twice as likely to develop clinical depression as men, yet most of these women don’t do anything to combat these feelings. When training, your body releases norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin which will help you achieve a sense of well-being. Weight training also leads to an increase in energy, better and higher-quality sleep, and a feeling of accomplishment and control.
5. Higher Life Expectancy!
Women who spend time in the weight room are typically active for more extended periods. That’s because weight training strengthens your muscles and improves your bone density. The upper-body strength helps you combat postural issues which can lead to back and shoulder issues. An increased hip and leg strength aid in mobility and balance.
So if you want to look and feel better for the rest of your lives, you better start hitting the heavy weights!
6. You’ll Improve Your Posture
In our everyday lives, nothing is abused more than our posture. Sitting all day at work and having bad walking patterns lead to many problems with our posture and most importantly, injuries. Proper posture will prevent that and help you have better power transfer in athletics.
You can combat a bad posture by strengthening your body. Exercises such as rows and scapular retraction (a move where you squeeze your shoulder blades back and together) help you enhance your postural muscles. Core strengthening also helps with improved posture by strengthening the entire torso area. Resistance training will also help you improve weak muscles which affect your posture.
7. You’ll Speed Up Your Metabolism
The less muscle you have, the slower your metabolism will be. As we age, we lose muscle at increasing rates, especially after the age of 40. If you have never done resistance training and you die, up to 25% of the weight loss may be muscle loss. If you start training with weight and combine it with dieting, you can preserve and even rebuild your muscle fibres. The more lean mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be and the more calories you’ll burn all day long.
8. You’ll Get Stronger And Be More Confident
If you have never lifted weights in your life, your everyday tasks such as carrying children, lifting grocery bags and picking up heavy suitcases must be challenging as hell. If you start hitting the gym, however, more frequently you’ll have an increase in functional fitness and will have no problem doing all of those things.
Researches show that regular weight training can make you 50% stronger in only six months. Being stronger and having more power is very empowering feeling. It will not only improve your physical activities but also will build emotional strength by boosting self-esteem and confidence. It also builds character as to build muscle long-term you have to be dedicated and disciplined.
As you can see, weight lifting has a tremendous amount of benefits for women! We feel and look better when we train with weights, and our overall quality of life improves. You should realise by now, that weightlifting is not exclusive to women or men, but it’s for everybody who wants to improve their lives!
Whether you want to look good, build muscle or even compete as a competitor, heavy weight training is one of the best things you can do not only for yourself but also for the people around you. Remember, if you improve yourself, you can help others grow, and that is all that matters.