There are many myths that exist regarding women’s fitness and health. One of the common misconceptions that I hear the most as an avid gym goer and fitness instructor is that if a woman adds weight training into her regular fitness routine, she will suddenly look like a vein-popping, muscle-bulging body builder. I am writing this right now to inform all women that this is not true! Weight training is just as important to losing weight and being healthy as cardio. There are many benefits to lifting weights a woman beyond the strength that comes with it.
First and foremost, lifting weights helps you burn more calories. Studies show that women who added lifting into their fitness routine saw an increase in metabolic rate, some up to a 40% increase. This increase in metabolism means that the more you lift weights, the more calories you can eat to maintain the desired weight. Lifting weight also burns calories for up to 24 hours after you’re done working out. The micro-trauma to the muscles that lifting causes, which are little bitty tears in the muscle, cause your body to go through a process called hypertrophy. This process burns calories and can last up to 24 hours.
Besides burning fat, weight lifting just makes you feel good. It is proven that weight lifting decreased clinical depression symptoms after only a few weeks, making women feel more confident, capable, and stress free. It also is important to know that lifting weights actually strengthens bones, preventing bone conditions such as osteoporosis. Bones grow stronger when they are under stress with the intention that if this stress is increased in the future, the bones will be strong enough to withhold the pressure. Weight lifting provides just the right amount of stress to the bones, which causes your body to lay down more tissue for protection.
And, of course, women who weight lift just look better in my opinion. The levels of testosterone are too low in a woman’s body for them to bulk up quickly. Training will only build up enough muscle to a woman’s body for them to be tight and toned, and not overly muscular. Toning will add shape and a healthy look to anybody.
Weight lifting is one of the best things a woman can do for her health and figure. There are external and internal benefits to weight lifting which is why every woman, of all ages and sizes, should add weights into their weekly routines.