For a lot of women many of their fitness goals is to “tone up” which means, in more technical terms, building lean muscle mass and the way of going about his would be to incorporate weight lifting into your workout, and yes that means lifting heavy weights. For so many women I have spoken to, the thought of lifting weights makes them shudder, “but I don’t want to get big.” Well unless your aim is to put on some serious size which will take A LOT of dedication, you will not become Arnold Schwarzenegger by doing two, three or even five strength training sessions a week, we just don’t have that kind of genetic makeup. Instead you will gain the following benefits:
Muscle burns more calories that fat at rest, which will increase your metabolism. By creating more muscle mass you will be able to lose fat much easier whilst maintaining a leaner physique. All done by weight lifting.
Gaining muscle mass can be a real confidence booster. A lot of women want curves in all the right places, and strength training through lifting weights is a great way to a achieve this. Creating a rounder and firmer butt can’t really be achieved through hours of cardio, your glutes (butt) it is a muscle that needs to be challenged through strength training. Another way to enhance a more hourglass figure would be to train your shoulders and lats (side of the upper back) as adding more shape to these areas can create a smaller looking waist.
You will develop better posture. Bad posture can cause weakness in certain muscles of the body. For example if you sit/stand round shouldered (kyphosis) you will have tight chest muscles and over stretched back muscles. If performed with good technique, weight lifting for your back by doing lat pull downs and seated rows can eventually correct postural imbalances and even decrease common back pain.
Weight lifting is known to increase bone density and in general this is important for everyone but even more so for women. As we get older women are more prone to osteoporosis due to the menopause, so establishing stronger bone density at a younger age will benefit your body in the future.
You will be stronger! Not just in the gym but you will be able to carry out everyday tasks much better without becoming so tried, whether it’s the gardening, DIY or carrying shopping. Not only that, your tendons and ligaments will become a lot stronger too, therefore you will become less likely to injury yourself during physical activities.
So there you have it, 5 great reasons for women to lift weights and gain strength in order to reach their fitness goals and promote a better quality of life. Don’t be afraid to challenge your muscles, doing bodyweight kickbacks really won’t change the shape of your glutes, you need the resistance of weights for that! If the thought of weight lifting still intimidates you then talk to a professional and even consider starting off with a personal trainer to ensure that you are performing the exercises safely and optimally.