By Praveen & Maheek Nair
Weight training for fat loss. Common questions women ask before getting started with weight training – Why to go for it, how much time to put in, measuring weight loss, input on diet. what to eat what not to eat
Lifting weights brings out a woman’s natural curves and body structure. It’s easy to believe lifting weights will cause bulky muscles to form, just as many guys become bulky when we lift. … Instead, when females participate in heavy weights training, their bodies actually become smaller due to more muscle and less fat. All in all, adding weight training to your workout routines along with cardio exercise and a healthy diet is a great way to support weight training. Weight training can support weight loss by burning calories during and after workouts and by preserving muscle mass to prevent your metabolism from slowing down.
Why Do Weightlifting?
It’s easy to understand why many females prefer not to lift heavy weights when in the gym. It often causes a lack of comfort if you are not used to pushing your body to its max strength levels. In addition, the female lifting recommendation for years has been to stick with light to moderate weight with an abundance of sets and reps. While this is not a bad recommendation, lifting heavy can add a great list of benefits that lighter weight (and cardio) just cannot compare to, all while possibly giving you faster, more dramatic results.
Burn more calories.
In terms of fat loss, forcing your body to lift heavy weight repeatedly will stimulate muscle growth, which creates a higher metabolism. The more muscle in the body, the more fat-burning potential will be created. When you are done lifting weights, your body continues to burn calories due to its need for muscle recovery. This is called EPOC, (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption). So even when you are no longer in the gym working out, your body is still burning calories for you. EPOC does not happen with non-resistance training.
Get toned, not ripped.
Lifting weights brings out a woman’s natural curves and body structure. It’s easy to believe lifting weights will cause bulky muscles to form, just as many guys become bulky when we lift. However, there is one huge difference between males and females and that’s the presence of testosterone. As you may know, one responsibility of testosterone is muscle hypertrophy. Since females have very low amounts of testosterone, becoming bulky is often not a realistic expectation. Instead, when females participate in heavy weight training, their bodies actually become smaller due to more muscle and less fat. Females actually become leaner and curvier, which often leads to an increase in body image and self-confidence.
I believe a strong reason many females would rather do cardio instead of weightlifting may be due to their lack of confidence. If the treadmill or the elliptical has always been your best friend, you may find it hard to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself with a heavy weight-training program. However, what many females come to find out is once weightlifting barriers have been torn down, confidence levels rise. I have heard many women in the gym say there is nothing more satisfying than when they are finally able to lift a weight that they could not lift previously. It not only reassures you that with some hard work and consistency you can push your body to new levels, but it also confirms that women do, in fact, belong in the weight room lifting heavy weight.
How much time to put in
It depends on the intensity and the duration of your training, and it depends on where you’re at; if you’re a novice or if you’re advanced.
Three times a week is a very good aim, with the sessions lasting between 45 minutes to an hour.