You have all heard me talking about strength training, resistance training, and even body weight training as the #1 way to increase your metabolism, get lean and tight, and eventually lose excess body fat.
So if this is so great (and believe me, it is) why are so many women avoiding the best thing they could ever do for their body?
Here are the Top 3 Reasons that Women are NOT Doing Any Resistance and Strength Training…
1. They believe “cardio” is the answer for total fat loss. It’s definitely in your face. Cardio is the best way to lose fat and get a lean body. WHAT?!?! Cardio is actually the least beneficial way to achieve these goals. Long, slow cardio sessions will not rev up your metabolism and will not provide the “afterburn” of burning a high level of calories post workout. There is also no way to develop that lean, tight look just by doing cardio.
2. They do not want to “bulk up.” I hear this from roughly 1 out of 3 new clients that I meet with. It’s pretty easy to change their way of thinking but a lot of people think of strength training and they think of bulked out, bodybuilder type guys. Instead, think of some high level athletes such as Dara Torres or Misty May Trainor (Olympic athletes). Do they look all jacked up? No…they look awesome and lean!
Women will not bulk up for a few different reasons:
*We do not possess enough testosterone and growth hormone to elicit such a response
*We will not be lifting for “size”, instead lifting for strength, athletic movement, and conditioning
*Guys will see a quicker body change anyway due to a lower percentage of body fat
3. Resistance Training is not easy to learn: How many times have you gone into the gym, ready to do some strength training, only to get overwhelmed and confused about how many reps, sets, and exercises? It happens all the time and it’s okay because you need to change your routine anyway. With my training clients we will go through 2-3 week cycles so there is some progression of exercises without complete adaptation and mental fatigue. Don’t worry if you get confused. A qualified personal trainer should be able to produce training cycles to meet your goals.
Resistance training along with high intensity conditioning and quality nutrition will produce the desired effect of a lean, tight, and toned body. It is not a quick fix however. You need to allow several months for real changes to occur, and stay with you.
Here are some basic guidelines for a well-rounded and efficient resistance training program:
1. Use bigger movements and full body training
2. Develop strength with body weight movement such as squats, lunges, push ups and chin ups and build from those using resistance
3. Avoid isolating exercises such as curls and crunches. These are a waste of time and will not give you the calorie burn and full body effect that you are looking for
4. Progress with weight, repetitions, or sets every workout.
5. Strength train 2-3 days per week
6. Increase the resistance if you can comfortably complete your set with perfect technique. Do not “settle” for light weights on every exercise. Form should be PERFECT before progression though!
Follow these simple tips, seek the help of a qualified trainer, and get into the weight room. Trust me, it will be the best thing you ever did!