Do women lift iron and if do should they? I am glad you asked! 🙂
Benefits of weights training are endless! Improving metabolism, speeding it up, creating lean fat free body, healthier look and fit… only a part of the whole picture. Resistance exercise can reduce bone deterioration and build bone mass, preventing osteoporosis. Isn’t it amazing?! And because muscle mass naturally shrinks with age you increase the percentage of fat in your body if do not use your vanishing muscles. Using them will keep them from leaving your body and burning attacking fat. Ladies, around the age of thirty there is a loss of 3-5% of muscle mass(!) per decade, making day to day tasks gradually harder to perform and slowing down metabolism – increasing the risk of weight gain. In other words, you grow fat very easily and it is harder to lean up and build muscle with age. Apart from future difficulties with health and fitness state, nothing is prettier than a fit woman, in my opinion of course. Firm young skin, healthier blood streams and longer living … as for me SOLD ! Give me some dumbbells 🙂
Some are scared to bulk and loose their feminine look? Women hardly bulk EVER! It is very hard for females to actually buff. Many female bodybuilders train insanely a lot and still look lean rather than buff. Ladies, we simply do not have enough testosterone to grow (muscle). Now you will say “How about those massive Hulk looking girls”? Well if you know that you need more testosterone to grow muscle you can go and inject some as well as other drugs. Do you know about gender transformation surgeries? Well if that is possible I believe many other nature adjustments possible. Here is your answer 🙂 What I am talking about when say “female bodybuilding” is discipline, healthy dieting and resistance training with increased cardiovascular training for shredding.
No bodybuilder is the same a week before figure competition and the day before it. No bodybuilder looks as ripped every day as we see in the magazine or on the competition day. If you have a read of competitors review or a certain fitness spokesman bodybuilding biography book / article you will find out that all the figure competitors go nuts with their training routine right before the competition (if we are talking about competing fitness people of course) where carbohydrates (such as bread, rice or pasta) intake is close to zero and cardiovascular training picks up as never to shred the most stubborn fat left in the body. However the rest of the days most bodybuilders look much softer and rounder than many people picture them.
Lifting weights or building your body can be really hard or slightly easier depending on your genetics and body structure / composition. Easy gainer would gain their body quicker than hard gainer; however they also lose their muscle mass as quickly as they gain it. Therefore weights training simply makes you a favour by keeping your health at better stage if you have put some good effort before becoming 30 year old. It is, again, up to you how far you want to go with your fitness achievements.
Hyperplasia which literally means tearing muscle tissues apart in order to create more tissues (hence larger AND stonger muscles). Lifting obviously stresses our bodies therefore the more you lift the stronger muscle become due to the compensation and protection mechanism our bodies provide us for our survival. Smart hey 🙂 Interestingly there is so much written explaining what muscle tissues made of and why and how they grow, there is still no universal explanation, there are theories suggesting that lifting heavy iron forces muscle to straighten and grow.
When lifting there are several chemicals involved: growth hormone is released, insulin, testosterone and cortisol which are also hormones released after or during weight training. Why it is important to know? Well cortisol in fact breaks the consumed carbohydrates converting them into fuel for your body. Growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor assist nutrition flow to your muscles when breaking down. Testosterone let your brain know that muscles need to be re-built, making them stronger. There is the whole team working on your body directed by your almighty brain. Believe it or not you are in power of all those processes. As long as you know them and are aware of what triggers what you can manipulate any processes in your body and mind.
Of course to help your body you need to charge it with good energy. You do not put diesel in you Mercedes or Ford, do you? Same principle here! One of the main nutrition is protein which you need to re-built muscles tissues, and I mean literally. Many specialists say you need less than one gram (!) of protein per kilogram of body weight or less to maintain health, but more than two to three grams(!) of protein per kilogram have been recommended for weight gain. So for example, I am at my heaviest right now at 75-76 kg therefore I need to eat from 150 to 225 (75 x 2 or 75 x 3) grams of protein a day IF I want my muscle to rapidly grow.
Protein does not just mean eating red and white meat, protein is also found in spinach, eggs, nuts and many other products. They might contain less percentage of protein but they still contain it. My advice is to literally research (Google, for example) how much protein in all the foods you consume or might consider to include in your diet; and keep the knowledge with you when shopping 🙂 Therefore when you read or hear that bodybuilders eat 5-6 times a day… Well do not get scared, if you have a palm full of nuts as your third or fourth meal and a bowl or spinach with broccoli before that, finishing your day up with chicken fillet… I am telling you, you are not eating too much. It is in fact not about quantity but quality. Calorie and nutrition wise you just ate less food but more useful energy than most of your friends. A size of palm portion of nuts for lunch is not too much and you will not go fat (if this is what you are worried about). Additionally, if you eat those tiny portions but every 3-4 hours during the day you forget what sweet or salty cravings are 🙂 Amazing! However needs discipline especial when starting up.
The bottom line is that if you are still scared to bulk but want to remain young and healthy for longer lifting is one of the best fitness choices. However if you lift and do get bull please share your secret with me, I really want to know 🙂
Here some fun presentation of why girls (and boys) should life 🙂
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