Health & Fitness

Benefits of weight lifting for Women

Weight lifting used to be something I hated in high school.  I played extracurricular sports and weight lifting was mandatory.  A couple of months in the gym gave me defined arm muscles, and bigger leg muscles.  I looked at my teammates who didn’t have any muscle mass after lifting for months and thought  I want to be like that.  I learned that I build and gain muscle easily. I weighed more with my new muscle, and I didn’t like it.   I wanted to be like the thinner girls who couldn’t gain muscle. They lifted everyday, like me, but didn’t look as bulky as I did.  As much as I wanted to stop lifting, if I wanted to continue sports, that was part of it.

Now, at thirty years old, with two kids and I am glad I was forced to weight lift in high school.  The muscle I have has prevented too much weight gain, and has given me strong bones. I enjoy weight lifting now, because I have experienced time and time again the benefits it can have.  I have seen the benefits of stronger bones, reduced fat, and weight, and a feminine curvy body.

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As women, we are prone to bone loss as we age.  We naturally have thinner bones than men. Throw in having children and aging,  by the time we are old, we have osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is the degeneration of bone, or bone loss. This is why it is vital to our health that we take calcium supplements.  Our bones need calcium because it is what makes new bone build. It is what bones are made of. Weight lifting can help your bones get stronger, because of the osteoblast activity.  Osteoblasts are responsible for bone regeneration. They initiate bone formation and use calcium to build it. When you lift weights, pressure is put on the tendon, bone, and muscles. This new added pressure on the bone and muscle stimulates the osteoblasts to initiate more bone formation, making the bone stronger to handle the new workload. The muscle that contracts and extends continuously pushes and pulls on the bone through the tendon.   Next time you workout and do strenuous activity, your bones will be stronger for it.

Weight lifting is done to build and gain muscles.  And muscle is more dense and heavier than fat. It also requires more calories to maintain.  Each pound of muscle needs seven calories per day at rest just to stay healthy. The added muscle will give you fat loss because of the new necessary calories required to maintain your body.  The calories you put in will help to maintain the muscle instead of adding to the fat. Not only that, but when you lift weights, you will burn more calories afterward, throughout your day. That’s an added bonus!

With the new calorie expenditure, and fat loss your womanly body will shine through.  Your legs will look more muscular and smooth. Your calves will look great in high heels, or shorts.  And your arms will be toned for that strapless dress. Weight lifting will give you those womanly curves you desire.  It will not make you big and bulky. It is chemically impossible for a woman to get huge, bulky muscles. The estrogen we have prevents that from happening.  If a woman is big and bulky, then she took steroids or some other form of chemical help. Women are naturally hormonally inclined to stay feminine. So don’t worry, you will never get masculine if you lift weights.   

Don’t be shy in the gym if you choose to lift.  Don’t lift light weights. Those light weights are not going to help you form the muscles you want or need.  You should be able to do about ten to twelve reps with the weight you have. The last few should burn, but not too much.  It has long been thought that a woman has to lift with low weight high reps, so she doesn’t get bulky. But it doesn’t matter whether you lift high rep or low rep.  The weight doesn’t matter either, you will build muscle regardless. But if you lift with light weights, it will take you longer to see results, or to see the curves you want.  So lift with moderate weight, about ten reps. Eat healthy, lots of protein. And in no time, you will see curves begin to form, and muscles bulging.

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