If you’re like me you’ve been there & done it all when it comes trying to lose that last bit of stubborn weight. In all honesty, the only part of my fad diet and exercise regimen that was, in fact, NOT a fad was my willingness to continually try such new and torturous endeavors.
No-carb, low-carb, lemon-water-drinking, grapefruit-eating, maple-syrup-and-cayenne-pepper diet? Yep, on some undedicated level I’ve tried them all and not surprisingly, earned less than stellar results.
When it came to fitness, there wasn’t much that this girl wouldn’t sign herself up for. I’ve dragged myself to Zumba lessons, Insanity-inspired Bootcamps, Cross-fit conventions….you name it, I’ve done it- Just not with enough consistency to merit any kind of satisfactory outcome.
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Luckily that all changed when I finally convinced myself to enter the one place that I’d been avoiding for years- the dreaded weight room. I don’t know if it was the sound of clinking iron or the sight of a small crowd of brawny guys fighting over the squat rack and bench press, but there was always a certain fear that kept my presence in the room to a minimum.
Fast-forward a few years later- somewhere around March of 2015, that all changed.
At that time, the sport of women’s bodybuilding was just starting to gain some momentum; Jamie Eason, Nicole Wilkins and Dana Linn Bailey were a few of the women making waves in the industry and women whom I looked-up to for inspiration. Not only did I find their tight and toned physiques to be somewhat of a masterpiece, but they were strong-willed & strong-minded ladies who displayed so much heart and passion that you couldn’t help but cheer them on!
These women promoted the exact opposite of what was trending in the health & fitness industry!- Eat to fuel your body! Being strong outweighs being skinny! & Muscle is sexy!
It’s been a few years now since I picked up my first pair of dumbbells- without a doubt I’m hooked! For those of you still teetering on the idea swapping your cardio sneaks for some iron, below are my top reasons that I will forever, without hesitation, be addicted to those weights! Comment below if any of these resonate with you in your fitness journey!
5 Reasons Women Need to be Weightlifting
1. You Can Ditch the Bathroom Scale!
For me, the scale went out the window; or perhaps it is more truthful to say that it resigned to the corner of the bathroom, behind the door, where it now quietly collects dust among other things. There used to be a time where I weighed myself two, sometimes three times a day. As sure as I would brush my teeth every morning I would also make it part of my routine to weigh myself. For some unbeknownst reason that number mattered to me. You might as well have written that number on my forehead as it most frequently had a direct correlation to how I was feeling that day. Since leaving my cardio bunny days behind, I’ve savored more enjoyable non-scale victories as a testament to my fitness success– you can’t measure bigger biceps, stronger quad muscles, new PRs on a bathroom scale. Plus, while pound for pound, muscle and fat weigh the same- muscle tissue is considerably more dense and thus takes up considerable less space! Like 18 percent less space!
2. Working-Out Becomes Fun Again
The “Boring” factor faded. Let’s be real, the reason I tried so many different fitness and diet fads in the first place is because I got bored with my old routines. You can only run in place on a treadmill for so many times before it becomes yet another chore to get done during the day. With weightlifting, my workouts changed…by the day! Some days I worked legs, while other days focused on back, delts, or triceps. Some days I lifted single sets with low reps and heavy weights; other days I went to town with the 5# dumbbells and still other days were all about super and drop sets! No workout was ever the same!
3. And let’s not forget about science…
Will lifting make you appear more manly? Absolutely not! The truth is women produce a mere fraction of the testosterone (the natural muscle-building hormone) that men do. Without the use of steroids or other figure-enhancing substances, women are incapable of naturally putting on the same bulky muscle as men!
Still, what happens if I choose to stop lifting? Will all that muscle turn to fat? Again, no way! Fat is fat & muscle is muscle! Simply put, muscle cells can’t magically turn into fat cells- It’s the same way that fat don’t suddenly transform into muscle! It takes proper nutrition and rest for muscle fibers to grow in response to a challenging resistance training (it’s a process we call hypertrophy). Without weightlifting, the muscle fibers merely shrink- (a reverse process known as atrophy).
It’s possible to stay lean while reducing the amount of energy we exert in the weight room. However, when we replace our clean-eating habits with excessive junk food, our muscles feel flabby due an increased number of fat cells- it’s a change in body composition and nothing else!
4. You Control Your Results
Most things in life aren’t fair- we don’t get to choose where fat gets added on when we gain weight, and we certainly don’t get to choose where it comes off of when we lose! However, weight-training moves the odds a little more in our favor… want bigger biceps? Stronger quads? Tighter glutes?- Then adjust your training to achieve those goals. Sure genetics plays a role in how we gain muscle on our bodies, but everyone’s seen those memes of guys who habitually skip leg day! We gain where we train!
5. Sculpt that Tight, Toned Muscle You’ve Always Wanted!
Last but not least, the best thing that happened to me when I picked up some weights was the fact that I grew me some curves! And not the kind you buy off an infomercial- It amazes me what people can get away selling these days!
I don’t care what other false information the media spews to the public- No matter how much fat you lose, you’re never going to uncover 6-pack abs or tight glute muscles unless you put in some work to grow and feed them properly. It is no coincidence that every workout that promises tank-top arms or a bikini-worthy booty involves some sort of resistance training. Undoubtedly the greatest change that occurred when I quit cardio was the fact that no longer was I striving to look good in clothes- I was building a body that looked great naked! Who doesn’t want to be a part of that?!
Not every women will fall in love with the sport of weightlifting the same way that I have, I can appreciate that we all have different goals in life, especially when it comes to fitness- but whatever your passion is- I hope you find it this 2017!
If you’re interested in FREE resources to get you started on your own fitness journey check out my post here! Or perhaps you’d benefit from my Top 25 Money-Saving Tips to Save Thousands on Groceries, Gym Gear, and More!
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