I was at the gym yesterday, lifting weights before cardio, and someone came up to me to compliment me on my workout. They said that they don’t usually see many women lifting weights at the the gym. And if they do, they’re usually doing the lightest weight possible. I was complimented simply because I was a woman lifting weights.
Ladies, don’t be scared to lift weights!
I still don’t understand this mentality that women shouldn’t or don’t lift. First of all ladies, if you’re wanting to tone your tummy and booty, like many women now do, you need to do a lot more than hit the treadmill or elliptical. To get the body you want and the full effects of a good workout, you need a combination of cardio, weight lifting, and a healthy diet.
*Sidenote: I do not workout to get the ideal body. I workout because it makes me feel good. It boosts my mentality, empowers me, gives me confidence and improves my overall health. Reject the notion that you should always watch your weight and that you should be self-conscious of your body.
One of the best ways to reduce body fat and to improve overall fitness is increasing and maintaining muscle mass. Lifting weights helps you become physically stronger, reduces body fat, gives you strength without bulk, reduces risk of injury, heart disease and diabetes, and fights depression. Most women I know who don’t lift weights say they avoid lifting because they don’t want to get bulky. However, it’s extremely difficult to bulk up as a woman if you aren’t spending hours at the gym at a time and following a very strict diet for muscle gain. We have naturally lower testosterone levels than men, so it’s hard to ‘accidentally’ bulk up.
Long story short, ‘toning’ means building muscle. You can do toning exercises in a variety of ways, including body weight exercises, free weights, and weight machines. If you’re a beginner, you should start with light weights and more reps to get the proper technique down. As you become more experiences, you should gradually increase the weight and decrease the reps. I usually do 4 sets and increase the weight each set while reducing the reps each set.
Throughout the week, I focus on one main muscle or muscle group each day. Yesterday, I focused on chest, hitting 5 different exercises followed by some cardio. My chest workout goes as follows:
What you’ll need: bench w/ bar, dumbbells, med ball
Lift the Chest
Bench Press 4 x 8-15
Incline Bench Press 4 x 8-15
Dumbbell Fly 4 x 8-15
Dumbbell Pullover 4 x 8-15
Med Ball Push Up 4 x 8-15
Finish up with 15-20 min. or cardio
Questions? Leave a comment or send an email!