Women and Strength Training

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k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 09:49
I found this article yesterday that I thought was a pretty good explanation of what women need to do to build a toned body. It goes into some of the myths about women and bodybuilding. This advice is going to seem quite contradictory to what you're used to reading about women and diet and exercise.
I've been listening to my bodybuilder boyfriend and "working out like a man" and let me tell you ladies, we have all been duped. It is much more effective to lift heavy weight than it is to endlessly repeat lifting light weight. I have the same "problem area" a lot of you do- the "chicken wing" (triceps area) and since I've been doing my bf's workouts, I can see and feel a noticeable difference. Also, it takes less time. I hate weight lifting, so I'd rather lift a heavy weight 8 times than a light weight 20 times!

The Female Training Bible

Unless you are on exogenous testosterone or other anabolic steroids, you will not become big and bulky from lifting weights. This is not to say that you will not gain any muscle, you will, but you will not gain muscle like a man. Instead, you will become toned and shapely.

Studies have shown that men and women do not need to train differently. If you are a woman and want to gain muscle and improve your shape and curves, then you are going to have to lift heavy weights.

This means that instead doing endless reps with light weights, as the media often prescribes women to do, you need to lift some heavy weights and really challenge yourself! While performing high rep sets (15-20 reps) does have some benefit, it is not optimal to adding muscle mass. Here is a very vague overview of rep ranges:

* 1-5 reps for strength
* 6-12 reps for hypertrophy
* 12+ reps for endurance


What about diet? One of the most common breakfast meals recommended to women is yogurt and a banana. Now there is nothing wrong with eating a yogurt and banana, but where is the protein and essential fatty acids?

If you are a woman trying to gain lean muscle, you will need to eat adequate protein and good fats (essential fatty acids). It is time to stop listening to the media and misinformed individuals and time to become educated and get results.

In this article, we will go over some basic diet and training information and then direct you to where you can get diet and training help and direction!


That's just a little of it. Personally, I ignore all the supplement talk, but that's because I believe in getting nutrition from real food as much as you can. But to each their own.

Who wouldn't want to look like this! She trains "like a man":
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
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Byrdface

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 114

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 11:00
I would LOVE to look like that! I need to get my boyfriend to set up the weight machine for me again! (I just bought a house so it is in pieces in my basement, currently)Thanks, K8! I always thought we had to do things like pilates to get "lean" and not bulk up!
Byrd

k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 12:15
More good stuff:
Women and Strength Training: Top Ten Mistakes Women Make at the Gym

At the very least, listen to Number 3: Wearing too Much Perfume.

God it is so nauseating when people wear perfume at the gym. Or cologne. Men are guilt too. I've been running and actually had to stop and move somewhere else when someone super stinky with perfume gets on the machine beside me. GROSS!
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
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kmartin

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 1,490

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 12:24
Alright, that woman was hot - who wouldn't want to look like that?
Welcome to your journey - May it be prosperous.

Dear Lord, You are the beginning and the end of this great narrative called history. Thank You for writing me into the story. Though I play only a small part, may I play it well. May I honor You with my days and my choices and may I truly know that Your grace works. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
~Ariel Allison Lawhon
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 12:32
That's what I'm saying!! She's the bodybuilding.com spokeswoman! Clearly, bodybuilding isn't just huge bulky man-like women Smile I look through my bf's magazines and while I wouldn't want to get "ripped and shredded", lol, the "Fitness" and "Bikini" competitors are super hot! Hotter than your usual celebrity, in my opinion, because you can see they are really fit, not just super skinny.

I'm telling you, once I reach my goal weight, my next focus is going to be bodybuilding!
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
Follow me on Facebook for tips, recipes, advice, exercise ideas and more:
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leahl

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 315

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 12:37
Very informative! I love weight training. I feel so strong when I do it. I can't stand it when people wear too much cologne and perfume at the gym. I would rather just smell sweat than perfume + sweat
Jill-gill

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 684

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 13:07
So how many pounds do we need to lift to get rid of the bingo wings? My friend recommended being in a sitting position and coming slightly off the chair and lifting your own body weight. SO I guess she is on the right track cos thats a fair few pounds!
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.. Corinthians 4v13
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 13:23
Smile It would be different for everyone, but I've been doing overhead extensions with 25 pounds, assisted dips with -140 pounds (leaving me 50 pounds) and a variety of other things, which I don't know what they're called because my bf explains to me how to do them Smile

Basically, pick a weight and do as many repetitions as you can. If you can do more than 12, it's too light. Add more weight until you cannot do more than 10. That's your weight! When you can do more than 10, add more weight! Even if you do it 2-5 times, you're still getting the benefit.
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
Follow me on Facebook for tips, recipes, advice, exercise ideas and more:
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LisaMWitt

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 73

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 13:44
Thanks for this! I have been lifting free weights, but this confirms what my husband was thinking. He suggested it was time to up the pounds, but I've been afraid to. I have no desire to look like a body builder, but I certainly wouldn't mind looking like her!
The perfume thing- I can't stand perfume at all. It gives me a headache. I understand people will wear it, but when it's so strong I can smell it from an aisle away in the grocery store, it's awful. And why would you wear it to work out? I know I get sweaty and nasty, so it wouldn't do anything but make me smell perfumy and nasty at the same time.
anapdc

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 518

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 13:48
There is only one thing I am afraid in bodybuilding: the boobs disappear! Most female bodybuilders I have seen have implants cause their fat percentage is so low, being breats mainly composed of fat tissue, they just disappear (like most athletes as well). Other than that, I too enjoy it!!
Do NOT quit! The universe always bows to persistence - Tom Venuto
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 13:51
Well, that's just what happens with a very low body fat percentage. Boobs are mostly fat. So regardless, the thinner you get the smaller they get, though oddly mine have not shrank this time around. I'm actually a DD for the first time in my life because everything else got smaller but the boobs stayed about the same. Strange, but I'll take it!
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
Follow me on Facebook for tips, recipes, advice, exercise ideas and more:
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steadytejay

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 25

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 14:21
Hahaha my boobs have already shrunk! I went from a full D and now they're struggling to fill a C cup. The good part is, I LOVE THIS! I didn't like having my big boobs and I feel so much lighter and more comfortable in my shirts now Smile
LisaMWitt

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 73

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 15:08
I wouldn't mind if mine shrank a little, but I doubt they'll ever get too small. When I was underweight in high school, I was still a C. Now I'm a D. If anything, lifting weights might just perk them up a bit. That would be nice. Funny where this thread has gone....

I'm curious, is there any difference in what someone with arthritis should be doing? I know the types of aerobic activity I do are affected, but is weight lifting? Right now I have no problem with my free weights. But is there anything I could or should do to limit inflammation?
Jill-gill

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 684

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 15:26

MMmm I've gone from a D to a B in 3 months. Damn boobs - why can't they stay!
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.. Corinthians 4v13
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 15:53
LisaMWitt wrote:

I'm curious, is there any difference in what someone with arthritis should be doing? I know the types of aerobic activity I do are affected, but is weight lifting? Right now I have no problem with my free weights. But is there anything I could or should do to limit inflammation?


That is a great question and I don't know the answer. But definitely post it if you find out! I'm sure it will help someone else too.
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
Follow me on Facebook for tips, recipes, advice, exercise ideas and more:
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Terrimomof4

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 184

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 17:56
I love all this info, I will try to up my weight when I am working with the machines, my husband always told me to do that, but I would argue with him that I would get bigger, the problem was that I wasn't eating right, but now I am, so I am gonna try it.

Oh yeah and now my D cups are also C's, but I just got a bra with more padding, so they look the same. hehe!
"Small steps make big changes" God is good, all the time! Jude 1:24
LisaMWitt

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 73

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 18:57
k8yk wrote:
LisaMWitt wrote:

I'm curious, is there any difference in what someone with arthritis should be doing? I know the types of aerobic activity I do are affected, but is weight lifting? Right now I have no problem with my free weights. But is there anything I could or should do to limit inflammation?


That is a great question and I don't know the answer. But definitely post it if you find out! I'm sure it will help someone else too.


Okay, I did find a few things. Basically it turns out that weight lifting is really good for people with arthritis! It strengthens the joints and cuts down on the incidence of problems. Just start out light and work your way up to heavier weights just like anyone would. Smile The only reason that "pounding the pavement" affects it is because of the pounding. Lifting weights doesn't have that effect.
jennyjarz

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 92

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 21:44
i really need to get a gym membership!

and yeah, my c's went to b's Sad
peasncues

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 32

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 22:57
Great article K8.

In three years of losing 70 pounds and then struggling with that last 30, I had little no success eliminating those last 30 pounds UNTIL I started strength training. Only then would those stubborn pounds come off. I had been jogging avidly, but that just wasn't enough. Muscle is the answer, muscle burns fat!

My only concern with the weight lifting article concerns different body types. I don't think all women have the same body frame and muscle building tendencies. Different body types need different strength training/lifting or resistance exercise approaches. Weighted hip abductor/adductor machines make my thighs TOO big. I've rocked those sets, then measured, and not liked the results. I happen to have naturally muscular legs and training with added weight went too far.

The girls on the linked page are absolutely smokin'! But me, and many other women like me don't have their petite frames. Girls with stocky frames, and muscular legs can't lift like those girls and look like that. We must be realistic about our body types, our body's muscle tendencies and address our bodies, (sometimes even different parts of them Smile individually.

Don't get me wrong, the main premise of the article is awesome, I support muscle strengthening 100%, however I also don't know if training with added weight is the solution for all body types.

It's just never that simple. Confused
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"As we go through our lives there are basically two pains we will encounter on our journey. The pain of discipline and the pain of regret."
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 28 Apr 2010, 23:15
I agree there are probably limits to how much you should do, but for people who are out of shape, we probably have room to gain some muscle.

One thing I disagree with is that thighs can be too big Smile I would love to have big thighs made of muscle instead of fat! I know not everyone would aspire to that, but I think it's super sexy. I'm pretty sure the only hope I have of ever having smooth thighs with less visible cellulite is to build muscle.

But I wouldn't particularly want giant guns or bulging pecs, lol Smile

I think if I saw those changes happening, I could stop, no? I mean, muscle shrinks if you don't use it, right? SO if it turns out to be wrong for me, I'll just take up marathon running or something Smile
My blog, This is not a Diet:
http://notsobigk.wordpress.com
Follow me on Facebook for tips, recipes, advice, exercise ideas and more:
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