Resistance training, also known as weight training or strength training, is a popular form of exercise for both men and women. However, scientific research has shown that women are more likely to experience changes in muscle mass and strength through resistance training compared to men. Despite these benefits, some women may hesitate to engage in resistance training due to a variety of reasons. In this blog, we will explore why women may shed resistance training and the benefits they are missing out on.
One common misconception is that resistance training will make women bulky or masculine. However, the hormone testosterone is primarily responsible for muscle hypertrophy and it is naturally higher in men. Women have much lower levels of testosterone, making it difficult for them to naturally develop large and bulky muscles. In fact, resistance training can actually help women achieve a more toned and defined physique.
Another reason why women may shy away from resistance training is lack of familiarity with the equipment and exercises. Some women may feel intimidated by free weights and machines, fearing that improper usage may lead to injury. However, many gyms offer personal training sessions with certified trainers who can teach proper technique and form. In addition, bodyweight exercises such as push-ups, lunges, and squats can be done at home with little to no equipment.
Some women may also believe that cardio is the only way to lose weight and get in shape. While cardio is great for burning calories, resistance training provides a unique set of benefits.
Resistance training can lead to an increase in lean muscle mass, which in turn boosts metabolism and burns more calories at rest. Additionally, resistance training can strengthen bones, improve posture, and prevent muscle imbalances and injuries.
Lastly, societal expectations and stereotypes surrounding femininity and athleticism may discourage women from participating in strength training. Women may be told that they should focus on “toning” exercises rather than lifting heavy weights. However, this is an outdated and inaccurate concept. Women should be encouraged to engage in all forms of exercise and pursue their own fitness goals, whether that includes running a marathon or squatting their body weight.
If you haven't realized yet, resistance training provides numerous benefits that women should not overlook. Despite common misconceptions and societal expectations, women can benefit greatly from strength training. They can achieve a toned physique, lose weight, and improve their overall health and well-being. It is important for women to feel confident and comfortable engaging in all forms of exercise, including resistance training.
In my Lean Out Program, we concentrate on building muscle through resistance training 5 days a week. Join me in a class soon! I will be back in the studio on June 1!