Go to the gym and you’ll most likely notice that the majority of the women in there are on some sort of cardio machine. Why is this? Since birth, the notion that in order to stay thin, you must do cardio every day has been hammered in to most of our heads. It’s true, cardio is an important aspect of fitness, but it’s only part of the equation and too much cardio can actually cause your results to backpedal.
One of the biggest myths circulating its way around the fitness community is that lifting weights will make ladies bulky. Guess what… it’s a bold-faced lie! In fact, weight training is crucial to over all fitness goals for men and women.
Here are 10 reasons why weight training is a not just for guys:
- Burns More Fat Than Cardio: Weight lifting is widely considered the best way to add size, but when compared to cardio, weight lifting wins the calorie-burning contest. When you expend the energy to lift heavy weights, your body requires more oxygen during and after the workout, resulting in calories being burned long after you’ve finished your workout. This is known as the Afterburn Effect.
- Better Sleep: We’ve discussed in previous blogs how crucial quality sleep is to your health and fitness goals. Regular weight training will help you fall asleep faster, wake-up less, and sleep deeper.
- Stronger Bones: When you lift, you’re not only training your muscles, your bones are involved as well. Preforming weight lifting exercises cause your bones to react by building more bone cells. This can prevent problems later down the road like Osteoporosis.
- Prevents Joint Pain: The more muscle you have, the better the joints are held in to place. Feel free to squat as low as you want…with correct form, of course.
- Cardiovascular Health: Cardio workouts have long been given the sole credit for heart health, but recent studies have shown that resistance workouts can raise your heart rate higher than steady-state cardio like running.
- Good for Your Brain: Lifting doesn’t only affect the muscles you’re targeting; it also works your brain! Research has shown that people who weight trained regularly had better long-term & short-term memory, along with longer attention spans and improved verbal skills.
- Muscle Burns Fat: Muscle takes extra energy to maintain, and 10 lbs. of muscle will burn about 50 calories/day when you are completely at rest. So, the more muscle you have the more calories you burn and the more fat you torch!
- Fights Depression and Bad Moods: Ever notice that your spirits are lifted after you finish a workout? Weight training releases those “feel good” hormones called endorphins. This can be a useful tool in combating grumpiness and stress, along with more sever cases of anxiety and depression. Plus, lifting weights has a way of leaving you feeling more confident and empowered. Who doesn’t love that?!
- Boosts Immune System: As stated above, weight lifting is a natural stress reliever. This allows your body to create more white blood cells, which are responsible for battling viruses and infections.