The Powerful Benefits of Strength Training
“IT IS A SHAME FOR A
MAN ANYONE TO GROW OLD WITHOUT SEEING THE BEAUTY AND STRENGTH OF WHICH HIS THEIR BODY IS CAPABLE.” – SOCRATES
While many women have embraced the powerful benefits of strength training, it’s still common for women to bypass the bench. Usually, this avoidance stems from widespread misconceptions. Here, we hope to break this trend by discussing some common fears women express about building muscle, and replacing those fears with the facts. Because, when it comes to building muscle, women have a lot to gain!
The Fear: Lifting heavy weights will make me look bulky.
Strength training builds lean muscle, which actually takes up less room than adipose tissue (fat) because it is denser and more tightly compacted. If your body composition contains more adipose tissue it will be larger than the same body composed of more muscle.
The Fear: Weightlifting won’t burn as many calories as cardio.
According to the Mayo Clinic, strength training helps with weight management and fat loss, and increases metabolism to burn more calories. The metabolism boost after weight-lifting is proven to last hours longer than most types of cardio too!
The Fear: I can’t lift heavy weights like a man.
No matter your initial skill level, you can find encouragement in the fact that you’ll likely progress at the same pace as your male counterparts. In fact, according to the American Council on Exercise, after a few months of training most women experience a 20 to 40% increases in strength – the same as men.
Health Benefits of Building Muscle
- Tighten and Tone Body Composition
- Increase Metabolism
- Manage Chronic Conditions and Aches/Pains
- Increase Strength
- Raise Self-Esteem
- Strengthen Immune System
- Improve Cardiovascular Health/Heart Strength
- Maintain Bone Density
- Manage Weight Easier
- Maintain Muscle Density
It’s important to listen to your body, though, and not take on more weight than you can handle. It’s fine if you aren’t ready for weights yet! Start by mastering the movements with just your body weight. Practice proper form for squats, lunges, and deadlifts or use light weights to practice other lift forms. Once these movements become easier for you, it’s important to progress. And perfecting your form will help prevent injury as you add weight!