The digital age has given women all over the world something that they’ve struggled for for centuries… a voice! Through the internet and social media, every woman is able to voice her opinions, to listen and be heard. The trouble is that while this may all be well and good in digital realms there’s still a shocking disparity between what we’re told about the gender politics of the 21st century and what we see in the real world around us. Women are still plagued by sexism, objectification and a rancorous pay gap in the workplace that may take over two centuries to close. As great as websites, forums and social media are for female empowerment there’s no substitute for feeling empowered in the ‘analog’ world.
Whatever your size, shape or fitness goals there are a great many physical and psychological reasons why all women can benefit from strength training.
But I don’t want to look like a bodybuilder
This is a common reaction with which many women reply to the prospect of strength training. While female bodybuilders represent one specific brand of feminine beauty this is understandably not for everyone. The good news is that unless you’re putting in some serious work you’re unlikely to attain the physique that bodybuilders have achieved. Since women produce less testosterone and human growth hormone than their male counterparts you’ll be unable to look like a bodybuilder unless you’re on a specific diet, training and supplement regimen.
I just want to lose body fat
Cardiovascular fitness is important. After all, your heart is what keeps you alive! However, it’s disheartening seeing women getting frustrated after spending hours on treadmills and cross trainers only to become disenfranchised when they fail to lose body fat in those stubborn areas. The thing is, strength training is great for losing body fat as it gives your metabolism a boost, ensuring that your body burns more calories to keep your stronger muscles nourished even when stationary. Plus, more lean muscle mass means that you can consume more calories thereby breaking the cycle of fad dieting that so many fall victim to (more on that later).
I just want to feel strong
This is why strength training is so intrinsic to female empowerment. Even though you’re unlikely to arm wrestle your boss for a promotion, there’s real value in feeling strong. Gaining the ability to do things you never thought yourself capable of and gaining strength in areas where you never thought you could is a great way of building your confidence and helping you feel empowered at work and in your personal life. If you don’t have the time to get to the gym, you can even strength train safely and effectively at home. As anyone at Atlantic Scale Company calibration weights will tell, you, however, getting the exact right weight is extremely important. Make sure that you lift a weight that’s appropriate for your ability before progressing to anything heavier while still ensuring that you ‘feel the burn’.
Break the cycle of dieting and self-recrimination
We’ve all been tempted by the bold claims of low calorie diets but there’s absolutely no value in starving yourself on fasting diets and so-called ‘cleanses’. A fit and healthy body needs a healthy caloric intake to look and feel great and when you find yourself enjoying more healthy foods and still making serious gains, you’ll finally break the cycle of yo-yo dieting that has afflicted so many.