As women, we’re often told the same advice over and over: do 30-60 minutes of cardio each day, stick with lightweight and high reps, or just do bodyweight exercises, you don’t want to get too bulky, right? It’s the same with each generation, just different wording, or creative ways of keeping you stuck on the hamster wheel.
Here are 5 reasons why women should weight train with heavyweights:
1. Resistance training supports weight loss and weight management
That’s right, endless cardio is not the golden ticket to your dream physique. By training with heavy weight, you send a very loud signal to your body that you need muscle. Muscle is a more metabolically “expensive” tissue to maintain than body fat is. Therefore, the more muscle you have, the more energy you expend just to maintain it, even at rest. Not only that, but muscle mass is also a much more positive tissue for hormone health than body fat is.
2. MEntal health
Any form of physical activity is a great escape from mental stressors. Whether it’s going for a walk or doing a heavy strength session, the endorphin release can help you feel better or at least get your mind off of things for an hour. It’s a good incentive to stay active when life gets busy and overwhelming. Of course, if you are feeling unlike yourself or have thoughts of self harm, we will always direct you to a mental health professional for help!
3. Build the look you want
Once you start seeing weight loss results, don’t you think you’ll want something to show for it? Contrary to popular belief, muscle is what gives your body sought-after curves and shape. By investing time and energy into building muscle mass, you’ll have the toned arms, legs and core to give you the confidence boost you’ve been looking for.
4. Confidence and independence
Speaking of confidence, weight training is excellent for building your confidence. Even on a bad body image day, you still have your gym performance you can rely on and not even you can deny how awesome it is to see your strength improve over time.
Getting strong also keeps you independent! You do not need help with your groceries, you can pull heavy things off of the shelf, and you can pick up your child and carry them easily. Not to mention, strength training is the foundation of youth when it comes to keeping you out of hospice care longer as you age.
5. Bone Density
Did you know women are more likely to suffer from osteoporosis and osteopenia than men? Your bone density decreases approximately 1% per year beyond the age of 40, dramatically increasing your risk of fracture as you age. All forms of exercise are good for increasing bone density, but weight training specifically challenges your stability and targets the bones in your arms, wrists and hips, ultimately protecting you from falls and fractures. Asking your body to regularly manage a heavy load is putting your muscles and bones under stress, sending a very loud signal to respond in a favorable way. Think of weight training as an investment in your longevity.
If you need help figuring out where to start with your weight training journey, reach out to our coaches for professional and personalized guidance!
B.S., NASM CPT