We commonly see women doing cardiovascular exercises or yoga for their various health goals. But most women ignore weight training assuming that it will bulk up the body. There is no truth to this. Instead, weight training will help you achieve your transformation goal.
According to research, weight training for women has several benefits. Here are five benefits of weight training that will make you include strength training in your fitness regime.
1. Lowers Body Fat Effectively
For most women, reducing body fat is one of the primary goals. While many take up cardio and other soft exercises for fat loss, they seldom consider weight training.
Weight lifting builds lean muscle mass. More muscle in the body boosts metabolism. It means the body burns more calories, thereby reducing body fat. Many studies have shown that metabolic rates stay elevated even 72 hours after weight training. It is thus recommended to lift weights at least three to four days a week.
Remember, when I say fat loss, I am not talking about weight loss. With strength training, the fat mass is converted into muscle, which is much denser than fat. Thus, while you see a reduction in inches around your waist, you may not see much change in your weight scale.
2. Provides Active Energy
As women, we have the responsibility of taking care of our families. And if you are a working woman, the responsibility doubles. You need high energy levels to function throughout the day.
Weight training boosts active energy levels throughout the day. Research has shown that lifting weights increase endorphins. These are hormones the body releases when we need the energy to do something. More endorphins in the body mean you have high energy levels.
Also, research has found that strength training positively impacts the body’s neurochemical and neuromuscular responses. Thus, Weight training keeps your active energy level high throughout the day.
3. Improves Bone Density
This should be one of the primary reasons to take up strength training. Women are prone to bone deformity as we age. But, with regular weight training, we can protect ourselves against bone loss. And especially in the postmenopausal stage, weight training coupled with calcium supplements is the best defence against osteoporosis.
As lifting weights put pressure on our joints and bones, it strengthens them. And research shows that weight training increases Bone Mineral Density (BMD) in women.
Strength exercises also build stronger connective tissues in joints bringing stability to joints. It also strengthens the spine, thereby giving you a good posture.
4. Reduces the Risk of Non-Communicable Diseases
Weight training for women is essential as it reduces the risk of various non-communicable diseases. It keeps in check blood pressure and lowers bad cholesterol, thereby reducing the risk of heart diseases. The American Heart Association recommends at least 2 days of strength exercises in a week for adults.
Also, with weight training, the body can manage its blood sugar better, thereby reducing the risk of diabetes. It helps in managing weight and keeping obesity at bay. Further, regular weight training reduces the risk of cancer.
Research shows that women who regularly lift weights in their 40s and 50s can manage mobility problems they face in their older age.
5. Weight Lifting is Empowerings
The best reason to lift weights is ‘weight lifting is empowering.’ The notion of you challenging yourself and getting stronger is empowering, and weight training provides that. Also, the idea of you sculpting your body to your desired physique is possible only through strength exercises. It boosts your confidence and self-esteem.
There are many other benefits of weight training for women, like better sleep, improved focus, etc. Despite the benefits of strength training, most women are hesitant to weight training. Notions like lifting weights will bulk up the body, or there will be loss of minerals, or it is tiring, etc., are hampering women from lifting weights.
Take it from me. Weight training for women is essential. It makes you stronger, happier and energizes you to do your favorite activities. You can keep many problems at bay if you regularly lift weights.
Before you begin your weight lifting journey, it is ideal to seek your physician’s suggestion, irrespective of your age. Another ideal point is to start the weight or strength training under the guidance of a coach. This will ensure that you are not doing wrong moves and save yourself from injuries. I get trained under the coach, he knows given my previous history what are the moves that I should avoid and how much rest my body needs.
If for some reasons, you are unable to hit the gym for this reason, it is better to start with squats with basic weights in both hands. Every individual’s anatomy is different due to various factors like genetics, previous medical history, and body basics, etc. Therefore, it is you who has to decide, how to go about it. If you are not wanting to hit the Olympics, you don’t need an athletic lifestyle, just the strength training.
It is time you begin your weight lifting journey and unleash the power in you. Yes, weight training is powerful than you can ever imagine. But, take a mindful call.