Strength training has many benefits, but why still so many women are afraid to start lift weights and stick with their cardio routine?
Weight lighting is not anymore only men's thing even though women sometimes may feel intimidated in the gym where the weight section is dominated by big dudes - or just dudes.😅 Also, women often are afraid of lifting heavy weights because they think it will make them look bulky and more masculine. Let's bust those myths and make it clear why do I support women in weight lifting and what benefits they can gain (apart from lean muscle mass that will give those curves😍).
Want to look good — and feel even better? Try strength training. Strength training, combined with regular aerobic exercise, can greatly impact your health. You may build strength, improve your muscle tone, and boost your self-esteem. But you can also injure yourself if you use the poor technique with your exercises.
However, strength training can be defined as any type of movement or exercise that imposes an increased demand on your muscles and/or central nervous system. This means that if you are a complete beginner simply moving and manipulating your body weight can be considered strength training. In fact, mastering the basics of good movement using just your body weight is vitally important if you are going to take advantage of all the benefits strength training has to offer. It is only as you progress and gain strength that it becomes necessary to use extra weights.
Here Are My 10 BENEFITS That Strength Training Has
1. Releases endorphins, while reducing stress and anxiety - Weight lifting has not only physical benefits - you can also gain a serious boost to your mood and self-esteem. Training with weights releases endorphins during and after exercise. Endorphins help fight depression, stimulate your brain, help you stay focused, full of energy, and make you feel happy. Your training lifestyle encourages you to dedicate yourself to many areas, such as nutrition and time-management. This sense of dedication and focus transfers into all aspects of your life, including your personal relationships. Strengthen your body; strengthen your relationships.
2. Helps body image and self-confidence - Strength training helps you achieve the most drastic and measurable results, helping to achieve improved body image, self-perception, and sense of accomplishment. You’ll be proud of your progress! Lifting weights in the gym or doing strength training exercises can give a boost to your confidence and you won't feel insecure in the gym anymore. With regular practice, you get stronger and are able to lift heavy weights or dumbbells at ease. A lean and toned body can further help you feel fitter and more confident.
3. Improves sports performance - Strenght training will also help you to develop and improve skills such as flexibility, mobility, coordination, balance, power, speed, agility, and endurance. Don't forget improved posture that will affect your daily routine. Isn't it great?
4. Decreases risk of heart diseases - Strenght exercises have been shown to help decrease the risk of cardiovascular diseases as they increase blood flow and there are longer-lasting drops in blood pressure after exercise. Physically active individuals have lower blood pressure, higher insulin sensitivity, and a more favorable plasma lipoprotein profile.
5. Builds lean muscle mass, decreases body fat, and creates lean curves - With strength training you can increase your lean body mass. Because muscles are your metabolic currency, when you build some, your resting metabolism speeds up, which means more burned calories throughout the day. In other words, you could burn a comparable amount of calories from an hour of cardio as you would an hour of weight training, but by hitting the weights, your body’s improved metabolism will continue to burn calories after your workout while you’re sat at work. One thing that many women are scared of is a bulky-masculine look. Although it is possible for women to achieve bodybuilder-like physiques, this takes an enormous amount of time and dedication. Women’s bodies only produce 5-10% of the testosterone that men do, so it’s much more difficult to bulk up. The final words are that lifting weights will help your muscles become leaner and defined, so you’ll become stronger and more toned without dramatically increasing in size.
6. Improves quality of sleep - When training, a better sleep pattern starts to develop. Your body will need quality sleep in order to repair, recover, and reap the benefits of all of your hard work.
7. Improves energy levels, stamina, and libido - It is obvious that already benefits above will make you feel good. Anyway, other benefits are the subject of many pieces of research. What science has found? Research suggests lifting weights improves sex drive by encouraging your body to produce more testosterone. Since healthy testosterone levels are associated with sexual desire, doing exercises that can increase testosterone may also amp up your libido. Another research in women has found that those who are physically active report greater sexual desire, arousal, and satisfaction than women who are sedentary. In addition, physical activity—especially strength training—can increase levels of testosterone, which may boost sex drive in men and women.
8. Reduced injury risk - Weight training strengthens your muscles and also increases bone density. This reduces the risk of fractures and broken bones. It also builds stronger connective tissues and increases joint stability which, as a result, helps prevent injury. Weight lighting can also increase spinal bone density and create a strong and healthy spine. This, coupled with an adequate amount of dietary calcium, can be a women’s best defense against osteoporosis. Also, strength training can help with correcting bad posture, and building a strong back and core will also help prevent any lower back pain.
9. Helps with bone density - Lifting weights helps prevent inevitable signs of aging such as joint pain and weak bones. This is especially important for women as around menopause, they tend to lose their bone density. Studies have shown the doing weight training exercises can prevent bone loss and reduce the risk of osteoporosis and diseases related to bone health.
10. Your diet and relationship with food will improve - As I always say and everybody knows that, it is not just about lifting weights. No matter what your goal is, your diet should be the point of interest as well. Sometimes, it feels like people think that fitness is only about dieting and restricting. It is more about to do smart choices in your diet and more than that, it is about giving all essential nutrients that your body needs for all body functions and for your recovery after a workout. Being consistent in the gym just makes you more aware of what you’re putting into your body. While it’s okay to have a treat, it will be a lot easier to say no to those temptations.
Strength training can be done at home or in the gym.
Bodyweight - You can do many exercises with little or no equipment. Try pushups, pullups, planks, and leg squats.
Resistance tubing - Resistance tubing is inexpensive, lightweight tubing that provides resistance when stretched. You can choose from many types of resistance tubes in nearly any sporting goods store. (or resistance bands)
Free weights - Barbells and dumbbells are classic strength training tools.
Weight machines - Most fitness centers offer various resistance machines. You can invest in weight machines for use at home, too.
Strength training has many benefits and definitely won't make you look bulky, or masculine. So, next time you are in the gym, don't be afraid to visit weight area. However, if you are a complete beginner, I recommend to do your research of exercises and their proper technique to avoid any risk of injuries, or find a fitness coach and get into personal training because it will give the most confidence, plan, knowledge and you will target straight on your goals.
For more questions and online coaching, don't hesitate to contact me HERE.