photo: Dara Torres
An updated outlook on old beliefs
In the past, it really wasn’t socially accepted for women to lift heavy weights, but in reality, Weight lifting is the best way for you to create a lean and shapely figure.
How many times have you heard that women shouldn’t lift heavy weights because they you will bulk up?
This isn’t true. Women do not naturally have enough testosterone in their bodies to bulk up the same way that men do. Lifting heavier weights will increase your muscular strength and your muscles will become denser. Combine this with a good diet and you will more efficiently burn fat which will give you a more toned figure.
Cardiovascular work outs are enough for women.
Not true. If all you do is run or ride a bike, then your body will burn both fat and muscle for fuel. In order to prevent loss of muscle, you have to include weight training in your workout regimen. Weight training will help you sculpt your body. As you increase your muscle mass, your metabolism will speed up so you will more efficiently burn calories when your are resting. You will also have stronger muscles to push yourself harder and faster.
Lifting weights will make me larger, and I will gain weight.
If you eat the wrong foods whilst lifting weights, you will gain weight. But if you eat correctly and lift heavily, you will see your body conformation changing. Your weight may stay the same or increase a little because muscle is denser than fat and you are building muscle. Instead of stepping on a scale, put on a pair of pants that used to be tight or a dress that you couldn’t wear. You will see that your clothes fit differently and you will be leaner. Remember fat and muscle are two different tissues. As you lift weights, you will increase your muscle and with proper eating you will decrease the fat in your body. Combining the two is the perfect match for a more sculpted physique.
You can change how you look by just cutting calories.
Technically, yes, but if you are cutting too many calories, you may be doing your body more harm than good. In addition, if you lose weight, but don’t increase your muscle mass, you will have a “saggy” look. You want to tone the muscles under the skin. In addition, when you cut calories to lose weight, your metabolism decreases which can actually make weight loss harder. If you cut too many calories, then your body stores fat instead of burning it for fuel. Lifting weights will actually increase your metabolism. So as you change to a healthier diet to lose weight and train with heavier weights, you will see better results.