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Lose weight, exercise more and get in shape are the most common things women want for their New Year’s Resolutions. Well, the most neglected or misunderstood part of the equation for achieving these aforementioned goals is strength training. Unfortunately, there are too many training myths centered around women when it comes to strength training.
Myths like: you will get “bulky” if you strength train or you have to “lift only heavy weights” or even the dreaded you are “too old” to strength train. All wrong, wrong, wrong.
If you strength train, you will:
You can start with the best strength training method in the world, your own body weight! And do not even think about saying you are too old. Strength training combats weakness and frailty. Read “Importance of Strength Training For Aging” for more info on this topic.
Women are just as capable as men to strength train. If fact, if comparisons are made relative to fat-free mass, differences in strength between genders tend to disappear(1). Meaning, there is no significant difference between men and women when you actually compare muscle quality.
That being said, yes women do have some differences in body composition (in terms of absolute strength, women generally have about two-thirds the strength of men(1)), hormonal profiles and susceptibility to knee injuries in sports; but not their ability to strength train. Since physiological characteristics of muscle are the same between the sexes, there is no sensible reason for women to train differently than men.
Getting healthy is about how you look and feel. Knowing you are making your body anti-fragile and age-proofing it. Being healthy is not by what some numbers on a scale tell you. The safest and most effective way to start strength training is with your own bodyweight. To learn a ton of great bodyweight exercises, browse our Lebert Fitness website. We are experts in bodyweight strength training. Our Lebert Fitness Education programs include online courses, live workshops, and an expansive Education Team. Our courses are creative, cutting-edge and highly effective for expanding your knowledge of our products.
By: Todd Cambio, BS, BA, CSCS for Lebert Fitness1. Faigenbaum, A., Age- and Sex-Related Differences and Their Implications for Resistance Training, Essentials of Strength and Conditioning, NSCA, p. 151.