Gym and Training Myths you need to know!
As a girl who enjoys going to the gym and has had many of the same preconceptions as most other women in the past, I wanted to outline some of the ridiculous myths that many believe about women and training.
1) Women shouldn’t lift weights or they’ll get too bulky
I’ve got one word for this. Bo****ks.
YOU WILL NOT GET BULKY FROM PICKING UP HEAVY THINGS.
You know those women bodybuilders who look really bulky? They eat, train, and take supplements specifically so they can look like that!
The truth is when you pick up heavy things, your muscles get STRONGER but not necessarily bigger. If you pump yourself full of testosterone and eat way more calories than you are burning every day, you will get bigger.
If you pick up heavy things, and eat the right kinds of food – actual healthy foods, your muscles will get stronger and denser; you will burn the fat on top of your muscle, and you will get that “toned” look that you’re after.
2) If you do side bends and sit ups, you’ll lose weight around your belly
Don’t do side bends and sit ups, because you’re wasting your time:
- Side bends will strengthen your side muscles without actually reducing any fat there, potentially making you bigger around the waist unless you change your diet as well.
- Sit ups will not remove belly fat. They can also wreak havoc on your lower back, and are an incomplete exercise.
If you have flabby arms or a big stomach, doing thousands of bicep curls and thousands of crunches won’t help.
No amount of targeted exercise will change how that fat disappears.
Want to make it disappear faster? Eat better. Your diet will be responsible for 80-90% of that fat loss. Strength train, not with targeted exercises, but with big compound movements that recruit lots of muscle (and thus force your body to rebuild lots of muscle, which requires extra calories burned, even after the workout is done).
3) You need to do cardio to lose weight
I’m a big fan of “do what makes you happy.” If you happen to enjoy running or zumba or street dance, that is good. More power to you. However, if you are ONLY doing those things to lose weight and you’re not seeing results, stop. There’s a better way.
Believe it or not, strength training will produce a more efficient weight loss effect than an equal amount of cardio.
When you strength train, your muscles are broken down, and then rebuilt over the next 24-48 hours. While your body is rebuilding those muscles, it’s recruiting more calories and energy to make the process happen (the ‘afterburn’ effect). What this means is that your metabolism operates at a faster level even while you’re sitting on the couch after a workout.
I hate saying it, but it’s true: if your goal is to JUST lose weight, then fixing your diet will get you 80-90% of the way there. If you never want to set foot in a gym or pick up a weight, that’s fine.
For exercise, it’s important to find things that make you happy.
“Strength training helps correct issues relating to cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, as well as building muscle and burning fat.
4) Men & Women should train differently
Ugh again, this is a load of rubbish!
There’s no reason that men and women can’t do the same types of exercises. While a guy can lift a certain way to get bigger, a woman can lift in the same way, but instead build that dense, tight, and lean look that most are aiming for.
Thanks to hormones, estrogen, testosterone, genetic, and dietary differences, those two people will end up with drastically different results. Remember, your diet is 80-90% of the battle!
Women have just as much a right to be in the free weights section and squat rack as guys do. Unfortunately, it’s just less common!
Happy Training Ladies and Gents!!