People in today’s fitness world put a lot of focus and effort into how they look, besides what it does for their health. There has always been a stigma of, ‘men have to be big and buff’ and ‘women have to be fit and
thin’. Guys are typically pumpin’ iron in the gym while girls are usually seen on the treadmill and stairmaster. However, as a young woman and fitness fanatic myself, I feel other women need to know it’s okay to want to look lean and toned. It’s okay not to be a cardio fanatic. It’s okay to want to build and maintain muscle while not looking too masculine at the same time. There is no right or wrong body type for men or women and I am here today to give some helpful pointers to all the strong women out there about muscle building.
Myths about lifting weights for women:
- “Muscle mass in men and women are the same. I will become too big and bulky.”
- No, this is not true! Studies have proven that men have a greater amount of skeletal muscle with an average of 76 pounds of muscle, where women have an average of 46 pounds. When you do heavy weight lifting, your muscles get stronger, not necessarily bigger. There are a lot more components to gaining larger muscles than just lifting heavy weights.
- “Heavy weights and a lot of reps is a good thing.”
- Wrong!If you want to tear down your muscle fibers to build them up and gain muscle definition faster, lifting heavier weights (higher than you’re used to) for less reps, is the key. If you’re wanting to increase your muscular endurance, you would lift normal to lighter weights for more reps.
- “I need to go to the gym everyday.”
- Please don’t do that to yourself. Weight training takes a lot of work and puts stress on your body. You need to allow time for your muscles to breakdown and also build back up. If you are constantly breaking down your muscle fibers and not giving enough time to rest and rebuild, you won’t see as great of results. Also, make sure to rotate the days of which muscle groups you are working so you are not over straining your muscles.
Benefits to building muscle:
- Increases your metabolic rate to burn fat faster
- Less risk for injury
- Increase in energy levels
- Increases bone density and strength
- Improves mood and self esteem
As a woman, you shouldn’t feel intimidated to have more defined muscles just because it’s more of a masculine trait. Feeling strong and looking like it too is something you should always feel proud of. I think many women get too worried about other people’s opinions or judgement. Just remember that you are your own person with your own goals and your own ability to be who you want to be. You are bettering you FOR YOU! What other people think of you is NEVER your business or concern.
The stigma of being ‘small’ or ‘thin’ is long gone. It’s time to give men a run for their money, am I right ladies? Always remember to be you and never feel ashamed for feeling or looking strong.
As always, Stay fit, stay healthy, stay beautiful, Warhawks!
Tags: Muscle building, women, health, strong, fitness
building, women, health, strong, fitness