One of the most common reasons women choose not to lift weights is the frustrating misconception that it will make them appear huge and bulky. This myth entirely dismisses the hard work, dedication, and discipline required to put on a significant amount of muscle and maintain it. Moreover, fitness experts and weightlifters themselves aim to remove the stigma around women lifting weights and encourage them to do it instead. If you are currently in the dilemma of choosing between adding strength training to your workouts or doing pure cardio, here’s some points to consider. Also, you should speak to a good female personal trainer if you’re unsure about how much you should be lifting and what is the right amount of weight to gain the physique you desire.
- Boost your confidence
The mere thought of stepping into the gym and lifting heavy weights makes you feel empowered. Working on your body or getting into fitness should not be solely for the physical results. The journey should also be about how you think about and treat your body regardless of the outcome. Moreover, confidence is not a tangible reward you receive after completing a fitness plan, nor is it something you order at an organic restaurant. Instead, it is the feeling of being worthy in any circumstance, and the powerful experience of lifting weights will surely bring you one step closer to that.
Another point worth mentioning is how you can gain self-esteem or confidence when proving people wrong. For the longest time, society has led people to believe that cardio was made for women and strength training should only be done by men. Not listening to those false assumptions and deciding to go against them will definitely make you feel more empowered.
- Build your strength
The progressive overload principle explains how you get stronger by gradually lifting heavier weights. Notice how I said “stronger” and not “bulkier.” Women often equate the two terms together when they are, in fact, different. Having a bulky physique does not automatically imply that you can lift extremely heavy weights. Likewise, having a relatively smaller build does not mean you are incapable of lifting.
Moreover, you must exert an insane amount of effort and have a strict diet to acquire massive muscle mass. So, simply doing weighted squats or chest presses will not give you the figure of a bodybuilder.
- Get better results
Compared to other exercises, lifting weights can help you burn tons of calories during and even after workouts. The logic is that lean and strong muscles help boost your metabolism, leading you to burn calories even when resting. So, if you focus on getting stronger and building muscles every day, results will be inevitable.
Strength training can also help you sculpt your body by giving you more curves. There is a variety of equipment you can choose from that will help you work on specific muscle groups in your body. Moreover, you can decide to set days of the week wherein you focus on a particular body part to optimize your schedule.
- Experience health benefits
All exercises have their own corresponding benefits. Weight lifting does not only help you with your joints, but it also helps in anti-aging. Contrary to popular belief, these exercises are non-impact and controlled, ultimately making them good for the knees. Weight lifting also helps strengthen your ligaments and joints, allowing your body to move around more comfortably. You can also reap the anti-aging benefits of lifting weights since these exercises help maintain lean muscle tissue in your body.
If you think that doing cardio exercises is the only way to strengthen your heart, think again. The chances of acquiring heart-related problems drastically decrease when you lift weights. Gaining more lean muscle mass gives your heart additional areas to pump blood to. As a result, pressure on your arteries lessens, and your heart gets stronger.
- Avoid serious injuries
The chances of acquiring serious injuries increase as we age and mature. Consistent strength training will condition your muscles and reduce the risks of you having an injury. This does not suggest that you will transform into someone incapable of being injured. Instead, this implies that weight lifting makes it unlikely for you to be easily injured.
Furthermore, the increase in overall muscle strength, bone density, and neuromuscular functions will all serve as layers of protection for your body.
- Reduce stress levels
A healthy person constantly dealing with stress is not considered healthy. This is because you cannot become healthy with exercise and diet alone. It is crucial to prioritize your mental health, and studies have proven that weight lifting helps cope with depression and anxiety. Along with the boost in confidence and self-esteem you get from doing strength training are benefits of having lower stress levels.
A lot of people treat their workouts as a way to relieve their stresses and frustrations in life. On the scientific side of things, these activities help regulate dopamine and serotonin in your brain, which are two neurotransmitters that play a vital role in your overall mood. In addition, having an imbalance among them can adversely affect your sleep cycle and digestion.
If you are looking for a sign to continue with that strength training program or class that you have been thinking about, this is it. It is time to stop listening to what people say and start doing what genuinely interests you. Go ahead and prove everyone wrong by pursuing something society claims you are not suited for.