You do yoga for suppleness and to stay chilled, Pilates for your core, and running to keep you lean, so why would you need to include another type of training into your fitness regime? Many committed fitness fans are doing just that, and their add-on exercise of choice is resistance training, sometimes called weight or strength training. You may have heard of weight lifting and think of huge sweaty guys grunting as they lift enormous bar weights. Banish that image from your mind! Any exercise that involves pulling or pushing against resistance – kettlebells, free weights, machine weights, or resistance bands will have the effect of improving your muscular strength. Resistance training is excellent for lifelong health and fitness for everyone, but it comes with a particular set of advantages for women.
It will tone and define your body
Don’t worry. You won’t turn into a muscle-bound hulk if you take up weight training. Young women don’t have the necessary testosterone to build that level of muscle. Most only have 10 percent of the testosterone of their male contemporaries. What you will do is strengthen your muscles and gain enviable body definition without bulking up. Resistance training can be targeted to particular sets of muscles so you can use it to sculpt the butt, arms, or legs that you always wanted! Diet is also essential for muscle development, with lean protein being necessary for building muscle. You may find that taking a whey protein supplement after exercise like those available at at steelsupplements.com will help your muscles to recover after a session and enable you to reach your goals faster.
It will bust fat super fast
Resistance training has twice the fat-busting effect of other forms of exercise. Firstly, you burn calories during exercise as your body struggles to cope with the extra demands. Secondly, the extra muscle you develop means that your resting metabolic rate increases because muscle burns more calories than fat. In fact, for each additional pound of muscle, you will burn between 30 and 50 extra calories! So the fat-busting effect of resistance training will last all day – and night – and will keep increasing as you build more muscle.
It will give you strong bones
Unfortunately, as people age, they lose both muscle mass and bone density. Your bone density will peak at age 30; after that, it will start to decrease slowly. This decline in bone health is more of a problem for women than men. Hormonal changes after menopause mean that loss of bone starts to accelerate as women get older. Inadequate bone density can lead to osteoporosis, which means that bones become so thin that they can break or fracture very easily. A scary statistic is that one in every two women over 50 will break a bone because they have osteoporosis. The more bone density you have to start with, the more you can afford to lose before you begin to have problems. Increasing and maintaining your bone density throughout life will help to protect you from these debilitating fractures. Resistance training helps because the effort of pushing or pulling the weight makes muscles and tendons pull against your bones, causing them to become thicker and more robust. It would be best if you did at least some of your resistance training standing. The effort of supporting the weight of your body during training will also strengthen your bones. Diet is crucial in the fight against osteoporosis, and yours should contain plenty of calcium-rich foods such as dairy products and leafy green vegetables.
It will improve your performance in other activities
A more muscular body will improve your performance in every other sport, from skiing to yoga. Stronger muscles will help with endurance, speed, and agility. Some recent reports suggest that it can result in fewer injuries to joints and connective tissue. For this reason, many professional athletes incorporate resistance training into their exercise regimes. Working with weights will undoubtedly give you better posture and a stronger core, allowing you to achieve even better results from your yoga and pilates sessions.
You can forget about being a member of the weaker sex!
All exercise is great for producing endorphins and giving you a buzz, but resistance training is something else! Maybe it’s the feeling that your body is so strong and capable or the knowledge, dare we say it, that you can probably lift heavier weights than many guys. Whatever the reason, resistance training makes women feel super confident and powerful!