Why Women Should Lift Weights

Nov 29th, 2012

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Category: Functional Training

Why Women Should Lift Weights

Weight Training for Women Why Women Should Lift Weights

By, Mark Wine CSCS; NASM PT, PES, CES
Founder of Functional Muscle Fitness
Creator of The 12 Pack Abs Program

What is the difference between muscle within a woman and a man? Nothing, muscle is muscle. The most misleading information in regards to weight training for women is that heavier loads (weights) will make them bigger. Yes, heavier lifting does increase muscular hypertrophy, but it depends on your reps, variables, rep speed, rest time, sets, volume, etc… Get my point? It is more than simply what you lift but rather how you lift it.

A proper weight training regimen for women should be geared to altering the body composition and not the body weight. If an individual is excessively overweight, or even obese, then a reduction in body weight should be expected. However, many of my clients haven’t seen a significant drop in body weight, but they have seen a significant drop in body fat. In fact, one of my clients had to purchase a whole new wardrobe without losing more than five pounds! What happened? The body fat fell off as the lean muscle latched on.

In the remaining portion of this article I am going to explain to you the methodology for successful resistance training for fat loss.

Weight Training for Women should incorporate certain select methods:
a. Multi-joint complex movements that require heavier loads.
b. Shorter Rest Intervals coupled with heavier loads.
c. Higher repetitions integrated into a heavier training regimen on select days.
d. Move more, rest less

weight training for womenMulti-Joint (MJ) complex movements have proven themselves over and over again to increase lean muscle while increasing fat loss. Taking it a step further, heavier MJ movements result in increased caloric expenditure during periods of activity and non-activity. Simply stated, increased caloric expenditure leads to fat and weight loss.

Another side effect of MJ movements is Growth Hormone (GH) production. GH is a naturally produced hormone that is stimulated through resistance training and amino acid digestion. GH significantly increases lean muscle, fat burning, and thus alters body composition favorably. GH is radically increased during MJ heavier load training!

Short rest intervals during training have been shown to decrease the likelihood of muscular hypertrophy while increasing fat burning. Muscular hypertrophy is when muscles increase in size. This increase is what makes women afraid of heavier load training. However, muscle gain results in additional calories burned and an increased metabolic rate. This is a favorable side effect. Having a lower body fat percentage and a higher lean muscle percentage increases ones healthfulness. Fortunately, heavier load training doesn’t mean that muscle size must be increased.

Weight Training for Women Proven Tips

Proven tip number one, make the rest intervals 30 to 60 seconds. Proven tip number two, combine two or three exercises back-to-back. This technique is referred to as “superset training.” Proven tip number three, perform four or more exercises in succession without rest intervals. This training methodology is known as “circuit training.” Proven tip number four, perform “drop-sets.” Drop-set training is a training format where the first set requires the heaviest load and the succeeding sets require lighter loads. Rest between sets of a “drop-set” should be kept to a minimum.


Higher Repetitions that use lighter loads is a vital part of any successful training program. The problem that arises with this methodology of training is that it is performed incorrectly or too frequently. Incorporating repetitions of 15 or greater during every workout will place emphasis on improving your muscular endurance and cardiovascular levels, but not significant fat loss. Most women, who have participated in high repetition training programs, which have resulted in weight loss, have had to couple it with a reduced calorie diet to achieve significant results. However, the participant’s body composition is not nearly altered as if heavier loads were utilized.

Solution, incorporate days where multi-joint movements are performed in a super-set and/or circuit style workout. During the workout multiple exercises should be performed that incorporate a reduced load with 12 repetitions or higher. The weight that is chosen throughout the workout should be “true weight.” True weight is a chosen load that forces the participant to struggle to complete the prescribed repetitions. EX: if 20 repetitions were prescribed than the weight that is selected should not allow the user to complete 30 repetitions. If the user doesn’t fail at or around 20 repetitions than the load that was selected was incorrect. Instead, select weight that leads to failure or near failure around 20 repetitions.

Move more and rest less. Throughout the workout women should take less rest time. Throughout the week women should have more active than non-active days. Throughout the week women should move around more before and after eating. In short, moving more and resting less will increase ones metabolic rate, fat burning capabilities, and overall caloric expenditure. All of these characteristics equate to a lean physique.

Heavier weights coupled with shorter rest intervals result in greater health and fitness for all women. By following the guidelines aforementioned in this article women can expect a leaner physique and an increase in overall strength. Both of these side effects are a result of fat burning and lean muscle retention. Therefore, it is highly advantageous for women to utilize this article as a guide while planning out their next trip to the gym… No matter what women end up deciding they must never shy away from picking up weight!

SOURCES
1. Growth Hormone – The Key to Unlocking Fat Loss, Lean Muscle, and Performance Enhancement
By, Mark Wine

Read More About Weight Training For Women

Copyright Functional Muscle Fitness LLC © 2013


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