11 Reasons Weight Training is Great for Women
A woman lifting weights? You are probably imagining a tough female almost looking like a man with her huge muscles. Well, you can ditch that idea because a woman lifting weights is not the same as a female champion weightlifter who’s too heavily muscled. In fact, women who lift weights the right way do not only look voluptuous, but are the healthiest of ladies as well.
The common misconception is that, the only effective method for losing weight is cardiovascular or aerobic exercise. And because of this, you see a lot of female joggers at the park or aerobic dancers at the gym for as often as five times a week. While this is a good start, later on, they will start to notice that as the body becomes smaller, the flab and wiggly bits do not really go away. Why is this so? Yes, aerobic exercise is a crucial ingredient for overall wellness but there are other equally important fitness factors that contribute to bodily transformation and one of these is weight training.
Lifting weights for women is essential because it can help them achieve a lean body, longevity, and optimum fitness. If you are one of those who think that weight training can make you bulky, then it is time to change that paradigm because this is the one which can actually help you burn fats fastest! Still not convinced? Here are 11 reasons why women like you should start lifting weights:
1. Burn the fat way faster!
A research was conducted at Tufts University and the results indicated that overweight women (first group) who lifted considerably heavy weights tend to burn more fats than the women who did not (control group). The first group lifted weights consistently at twice per week and on average, lost 14.6 pounds of fat and gained only 1.4 pounds in muscles. Meanwhile, the control group just dieted and did not lift weights. They too burned some but only lost 9.2 pounds of fats and gained zero muscle.
The thing is that, when you take part in an intensive weight training program like The Master’s Hammer and Chisel, the body’s fat-burning process continues for hours even after your workout is done as your metabolism keeps at an elevated level. On the other hand, as soon as you stop with your cardio workout, the fat-burning action likewise ceases.
2. Shape up your body the way you want it.
Do you agree that genetics play a big role in the kind of body shape that you have now? That could be true but that also seems to leave you with no choice if you are not so happy with your current body type. Fortunately for you, weight training has the ability to slim you down and contour your body the way you want it. This is applicable even for middle-aged women who are at a stage when creating more desirable curves seem like a big challenge.
You should take a good look at all the femme fatales who have completed P90X. Their physical transformations are so impressive that they are almost unbelievable. Apparently, shedding a small 3% of your body’s fat could mean a huge 3 inches off your thighs and hips. The change will be so obvious that most people you know will notice the transformation. Don’t worry though because in the course of this transformation, you are not going to bulk up. Women simply do not have enough of those muscle-building hormones to bulk up like the men do. As long as you continue a diet that helps create calorie deficits, you are sure to shed those pounds.
3. Supercharge your body’s metabolic processes
When you have less muscles, your metabolic process are likewise slowed down. Now, you do not want a sluggish metabolism because you won’t burn calories this way. What you need is a supercharged metabolism in order to lose weight. However, women lose muscles as they age and at accelerated rates at that, especially when they reach 40. This is where weight training plus a proper diet is most beneficial because it can help reconstruct your muscle fibers and preserve them. Dieting without resistance training is not helpful because weight loss could only be due to muscle loss. So go lift weights, have more lean mass, expedite metabolism, burn more calories, and finally, get that ultimate body.
4. Become stronger and more self-confident
This generation is all about women empowerment and weight training supports this cause. Lifting weights help you build your strength so you can become confident enough to handle your daily activities, whatever they may be. Weight training provides you the functional fitness to perform tasks that used to be challenging for you. It will allow you to lift grocery bags, carry children, or pick up heavy suitcases with ease. The Mayo Clinic has stated that in just 6 months, you can be 50% stronger when you make weight training a regular part of your fitness regime. At the end of the day, it is not only your body that becomes strong but most importantly, your emotional intelligence is enhanced as your self-esteem is boosted.
5. Build up stronger bones too
Osteoporosis is that medical condition that threatens women as they grow older when their bones become brittle and frail. Needless to say, it cannot be overemphasized that you have to build and maintain healthy bone mass to completely prevent this from happening. You have to be able to execute some weight-bearing exercises that will make your bones grow bigger and stronger. Together, tougher bones and enhanced muscle mass mean better balance and flexibility for you.
6. Manage depression more effectively
Clinical depression is no joke and it can have serious consequences in the way you live your life. There are many ways by which it can be managed and one of the highly recommended is physical exercise in its varied forms including cardio and yoga. In the same manner, lifting weights effectively alleviate depression through the release of the happy hormones called endorphins. Women who are into full-time strength training coupled with psychological therapy attest that the symptoms of depression lessen significantly.
7. Enhance your sports prowess
Athlete or not, lifting weights result in improved sports fitness. Weight training gives you better muscle mass and the heightened strength to deal with any sports action. Now, you can go biking, running, swimming, skiing, or golfing without catching your breath too often. Enjoy sports more than you ever did before.
8. Avoid injury and quash arthritis
With each weight you lift, your joints correspondingly become more stable while your tendons and ligaments get strengthened. Proper weight training and execution helps you avoid physical injuries as you go through the demanding activities of daily living. For individuals who suffer from arthritis, strength training can enhance their physical function. This was found to be true in a study made at the University of Bangor in UK. Those participants who were mildly disabled but went into resistance training for a 12-week period experienced improvements in their work life. They were able to work more frequently and intensively as well as raised their range of movements with lesser pain due to arthritis.
9. Toughen your heart
Cardiovascular disease is a silent killer as 480,000 women aged more than 25 suffer and die from it on a yearly basis. What can lifting weights do to toughen your heart in this case? Apparently, pumping iron furthers your heart’s pumping action as well. It increases the good cholesterol while decreasing the bad. It likewise reduces your blood pressure levels. It has been reported through the Journal of the American Medical Association that individuals who spend 30 minutes on strength training weekly help reduce the risks in relation to heart ailments at 23% as compared to those who do not weight-lift.
10. Steer clear of Diabetes
Diabetes is a known killer as well when it is not put under control. Sadly, women are not exempted. But with resistance training, your body’s sugar processing or glucose utilization can be improved by as high as 23%. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attested that lifting weights consistently for 16 weeks can result to an improvement in glucose metabolism that is equivalent to you taking your meds for Diabetes. And so, the less fat you have, the more lean the body becomes, and the more glucose in the blood can be removed efficiently. Ultimately, this means that you can either prevent type 2 Diabetes altogether or minimize complications from it.
11. Sleep soundly
Sleep deprivation can leave you weak and groggy until eventually, it makes you sick. But as long as you are religiously lifting weights, this should not be a problem. Strength training helps you achieve deep sleep faster with less interruption. In a research work published through the International SportMed Journal, it was established that weight training done in the morning or resistance training that is highly intensive has a positive effect on sleep. Subjects were able to sleep soundly and for longer hours on the same night after their training.