In recent years it’s become far more socially accepted for women to lift weights (heavy weights), but there are still some myths that refuse to go away.
Weight lifting is the best way to sculpt your body into a lean yet shapely figure and despite what many of the myths imply, it is a great thing for women to do!
So what myths should you be aware of, and learn to ignore?
1. Women shouldn’t lift heavy or they will get bulky
This is ridiculous! Lifting weights will increase the strength of your muscles but unless you have an abnormally large amount of testosterone (or steroids) in your body, it won’t increase the size of them by a large amount…and you certainly won’t end up looking bulky.
If you lift heavy weights and follow a clean, healthy diet then your muscles will become stronger and more dense, and you’ll burn fat; resulting in the toned appearance many women crave, as shown in the photo above. That woman’s body certainly doesn’t look bulky to me, she has curves in all the right places. Lifting weights will help you to sculpt your body, it will not make you look bulky (or manly)!
2. Cardio is all women need
If running is your thing that’s cool but, contrary to popular belief, simply doing cardio isn’t enough for women in the same way that it isn’t enough for men. Although cardio burns plenty of calories, weight training increases muscle mass which speeds up the metabolism, meaning that more calories are burned during rest. I do a combination of weight training and cardio to get the benefits of both workouts.
3. Lifting weights makes you gain weight
Lifting weights will not make you gain fat. Yes, if you lift heavy and eat the wrong things you could see your body increasing in size, but if you eat correctly then you’ll actually see your body sculpting into a trim shapely figure. Technically, you could see the number on the scales going higher because you’re building muscle, but that doesn’t mean you have anything to worry about. As I’ve said many times before, the weight on the scales means nothing, you need to focus on how your clothes fit.
As you build muscles and lose fat your body shape will improve and your figure will become more toned and lean.
4. You don’t need to lift weights or do cardio, you just need to eat less
Although following a clean, healthy diet is essential for weight loss, you won’t see the results you want just by cutting your caloric intake. If you cut the amount of food you eat by a significant amount your body actually stores fat instead of burning it for fuel, meaning that you won’t be losing weight as efficiently as if you were eating a decent amount of food and exercising regularly.
Lifting weights will actually boost your metabolism, meaning that you will burn fat quicker!