This One’s for the Ladies
For this week’s blog, I’m going to touch base on something that I encounter quite often from my female clients. Lifting weights. Now some of you ladies are already thinking, “But Andy, I DO lift weights.” That’s good, but probably not good enough.
Lifting weights that are the same weight as your water bottle for 20-25 unchallenging reps probably doesn’t count for much. Sorry to break it to you. Women should choose a weight that they can perform for 8-15 challenging reps. Now, I’m not talking about grabbing a pair of dumbbells off of the rack that cause a hernia because you can’t maintain proper form throughout the exercise, but choose a weight that will challenge you through your reps. At no point should one complete a set of 20 reps and be thinking, “I could realistically hit 5-10 more reps if I wanted to.” At the end of a set, the possibility of performing a few more sound reps should be out of the question. Focus on compound movements such as squats, presses, and lunges that work more than a single muscle group. Now I know you’re thinking, “Andy, I don’t want to bulk up.” Let me tell you right away that it takes a lot more than just lifting heavy weights to bulk up. Unless you’re the rare specimen that has above average levels of testosterone pumping through your body, you don’t have much to worry about. Guys who lift weights looking to put on tons of muscle have to consume ridiculously high amounts of calories to get that way. That’s exactly the same for women looking to bulk up. What I’m saying here is that you would have to make large dietary adjustments to get big, so if you don’t want to eat to get big, you won’t get big.
Here are just a few benefits of women lifting weights:
Increase in bone density:
As women age, their bone density decreases. Post menopause, the body slows down on estrogen production and this leads to osteoporosis. Lifting weights help fight against this. Stronger bones also assist in movement many years down the road.
It takes more calories to maintain muscle, so naturally, resting metabolic rate is higher on someone with more lean body mass. Increasing lean mass will stoke the fire and with the increase in muscle, body fat levels will begin to decrease. This means you’ll be able to do less cardio! Let’s face it, the treadmill is boring and too much steady state cardio will ultimately lead to muscle loss.
This one speaks for itself. More energy is awesome. Studies show that the right kind of exercise helps establish better sleep patterns.
The right kind of curves
With an increase in lean muscle, the body begins to take shape. The arms are long and lean, and the hourglass shape is established. This can help with self-esteem! Even though endurance training assists with weight loss, both muscle and fat are lost, so adding weights into your program will help fight against this!
These are only a select few of the MANY benefits of women lifting weights! My challenge for the ladies out there is to lift more weights. Choose weights that will challenge you through 8-15 reps per set. If you’re done with a set of 15 reps and you know in your mind that you probably could’ve taken that weight for 5 more reps, you need to increase to a higher weight. Over the next month, give this a shot. You’ll see great changes, I promise! If you don’t know where to start, just ask me!
Yours in Health