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Girls, Get Your Guns

Why Women Should Lift Weights!

Hormones and diet make the sexes different, but women can still build muscle and gain strength. You don’t want to look like a man, but you need to become a stronger woman!

Many women make a huge mistake when they step foot in the gym. They assume that heavy weightlifting will turn them into gargantuan man-ladies. If you’re a woman, answer this: when you go into the gym, what is the typical tact you take to your workout program?

Do you first do a light warm-up on the mats? Then do you head over to the cardio machines for a good 20 or 40 minutes, thinking you’ve gotta blast that cheesecake you mashed last night? Then, do you flex with a few rounds of lightweight circuit sets? Finally, maybe you head off to the exercise mats to crunch for 10 to 20 minutes trying to lean that tummy?

If this is your patty-cake program, it’s time to change your course! The program above illustrates most women’s workout programs. They don’t want to get big and “bulky,” so they gravitate toward exercises they think burn the most calories and “tone” their muscles. “No bulk needed. Thank you very much.”

If you're reaching for the pink weights, it better be your warm-up.
If you’re reaching for the pink weights, it better be your warm-up.

Lift, Ladies!

These women actually accomplish very little. They may burn a few hundred calories during the cardio workout, and possibly a hundred more in the circuit training, but they won’t reshape how their bodies look. A complete body transformation cannot take place when you’re pushing daisies instead of iron.

If you want that complete body transformation, to the point where your family hardly recognizes you, then you have to sit up and change, right now. Take action and start lifting heavy weights.

“But won’t I get bulky?”

No – and here’s why.

Female Testosterone Levels

The first reason lifting heavy weights won’t make you don tights, rip sleeves, and become the next Incredible Hulk is that you don’t have the testosterone levels to pack on tons of mass.

Men have higher testosterone levels than women; women have higher estrogen levels than men. Compare testosterone levels in a man to the amount in a woman and you find a large gap. Why? Simply put, women don’t have testicles. The lion’s share of male testosterone comes from the testes.

Women do produce the hormone, but it comes from your ovaries and adrenal glands in smaller doses. Talk to your doctor and have your testosterone levels tested, especially if you’ve had your ovaries removed, as you will produce even lower levels of the important hormone.

Testosterone is the primary muscle-building hormone in the body. Since women have significantly less of this “Heracles Hormone,” they cannot put on muscle mass as easily as men.

Even women who want to build bigger muscles and work extremely hard to bulk still build muscle mass at a fraction of the rate that men do. Stop worrying and start lifting – you won’t turn into the Hulk overnight … unless you get blasted with weaponized Gamma radiation.

If you're worried about bulking up, remember you don't have enough testosterone.
She’s checking out her form … and so are we.

Female Dietary Habits

The second reason women won’t go “GREEN” from lifting heavier weights is that most women don’t consume enough calories to create the mass. Think about it this way: when was the last time you purposefully over-ate to gain weight? Christmas dinner over-indulgence doesn’t count.

We’re talking purposely consuming more calories than you need, not because of enjoyment, but because you want to gain. When was the last time you forced down extra servings of protein at dinner because it fit your mass-gaining goals? Chances are, never. Most women are born restriction eaters. They have a built-in tendency to want to be slimmer.

To become the bulky beast you needlessly fear, you would have to eat excessive calories daily, add supplementation, and then lift heavy weights on a regular basis. Many women hardly eat enough calories to maintain their current body weight. Getting huge isn’t easy. It won’t happen to you if you learn how to bench press.

Female Force Development

Finally, you won’t get big and bulky because you typically won’t generate the degree of force that men will. There are some strong women out there who push themselves to the max. But for the most part, men have a larger degree of drive to push their bodies beyond the limits of comfort. (Refer to the difference in testosterone levels above!)

Building significant amounts of muscle mass requires pushing yourself past the point of comfort. Can you still squat near your max when you know your muscles are tearing? Can you push past and go harder? Many men go on, sometimes to the point of injury. The force factor keeps most women from generating extremely large volumes of muscle mass.

Higher Metabolic Rates

Now that we’ve established that you’re not going to suddenly put on 1,000 pounds, turn green and rampage through downtown, let’s talk about some of the great benefits to weight training.

Heavier weight offers women a higher metabolic rate. Since you work against a high degree of resistance with heavy weights, you create tiny muscular tears throughout the body. You will expend a greater number of calories post-workout to repair those tiny tears, thus increasing your overall calorie requirements.

Most women want to get lean and shed body fat. Doesn’t a high metabolism sound like something that might help you achieve that goal? You bet it does.

If you're looking to get lean, lifting weights expends considerably more calories than cardio.
Barbell lunges push your metabolism into the red zone.

Greater Muscle Definition

The next benefit to lifting heavier weights is that you’ll see greater overall muscle definition. When you lift such a light weight as most women do (really? 2-pound curls?), the muscles are barely challenged.

As a result, your muscles won’t feel any need to adapt (grow) since they can easily handle what you throw at them.

Push yourself harder and take the weight up to the next level – that’s when you see muscle definition and form improve. Provided you also follow a proper diet for fat loss, heavy weights will create the greatest change to how your body looks.

Improved Functional Strength

The final benefit you achieve by lifting heavier weights is that you improve functional strength capabilities. Since you get much stronger by lifting heavier weights, everyday activities will get much easier over time. You won’t need to call your brother to move a couch anymore, or even have your son carry your suitcase. Muscularity also means a lower chance of injury if you participate in sports or other activities.

Do not fear heavy weights any longer. What you should fear is being old and weak. What you should fear is wasting more time training strategies that just won’t get you where you want to go. Push your body – you are stronger than you think.

Guess what? Muscular strength translates into female independence!

Lifting weights is what changed my figure for the first time in my life! Cardio was never enough. Trust me today for results adjust your training program and incorporate strength training TODAY~ “Claudine Kidson”

Reference: http://www.bodybuilding.com – Shannon Clark

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Cellulite…That pain in the…

Hi everyone so how is your day so far? I decided to read up/research more on Cellulite, for this is an area that I struggled with for quite some time. So I got the relevant information explaining this little pain in the butt 😉

Cellulite is very common in women, much more in woman than men and is mostly found in the abdominal area, buttocks and thighs/legs…So have you ever wondered how you can reduce cellulite? Well I can tell you today you can reduce cellulite by decreasing excess body fat. By having a cleaner diet and by exercising more for a start!

By following a balanced diet can significantly reduce your amount of cellulite. I can speak out of my own experience for I had “ALLOT” of cellulite before I lost the amount of fat and weight like I did! My legs even had cellulite and this resulted in me having no self confidence to even wear a short!

I believe that the cellulite I had was from eating allot of junk food, excess consumption of saturated fats and from allot of sweets/sugar and the fact that I have a underactive thyroid. But all of this was used as an excuse for way to long and today I can honestly confess that the cellulite disappeared the more toned I became!

Cellulite is also caused by: (This paragraph/material from Wikipedia)

1.       Hormones play a dominant role in the formation of cellulite. Estrogens may be the

important hormone to initiate and aggravate cellulite. However, there has been no reliable clinical evidence to support such a claim. Other hormones, including insulin, the catecholamine’s adrenaline and noradrenalin, thyroid hormones, and prolactin, are all believed to participate in the development of cellulite.

 2.       Genetic factors

There is a genetic element in individual susceptibility to cellulite. Researchers led by Dr. Enzo Emanuele have traced the genetic component of cellulite to particular polymorphisms in the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) and hypoxia-inducible factor 1A (HIF1a) genes

3.       Predisposing factors

Several factors have been shown to affect the development of cellulite. Gender, race, biotype, distribution of subcutaneous fat, and predisposition to lymphatic and circulatory insufficiency have all been shown to contribute to cellulite.

4.       Diet

Improving one’s diet, combined with exercise, can improve the appearance of cellulite.

5.       Lifestyle

A high stress lifestyle will cause an increase in the level of catecholamine’s, which have also been associated with the evolution of cellulite.

What is cellulite?: and by having excess fat underneath the skin (bodybuilding.com)

Cellulite is a collection of fat that pushes the connective tissue beneath the skin which causes the changes in appearance of the skin. Cellulite is much more common in women than men because of differences in the way fat, muscle and connective tissue are distributed under the skin.

The best way to reduce the amount of cellulite is to decrease excess body fat, eat fewer calories and exercise more.

Changing Your Diet

A combination of proper eating habits, aerobic exercises and strength training are the best things you can do to fight against cellulite. Opposite from that, if you live a sedentary lifestyle and you continue eating fatty foods, the cellulite will get bigger and bigger.

A well balanced diet can help women reduce cellulite. Improper diet and lack of physical activity can lead to accumulation of fluid, toxins and waste products in the body that make cellulite formations.

TIPS TO BETTER YOUR FUTURE PHYSIQUE:

A balanced diet contains the right proportions of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals.

The diet should contain a high amount of fiber, lean proteins and complex carbohydrates.

Intake of trans and saturated fats must be minimal.

The food must be rich in omega fatty acids and essential fatty acids.

Avoid junk foods and fast foods, which contain bad cholesterol.

Add fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet.

Drink plenty of water every day. Avoid the use of caffeinated drinks.

Junk foods, most canned foods, fast foods, food with preservatives, oily foods, sugary foods, and refined foods all provide extra calories, slow down metabolism and increase the chances of getting cellulite.

Fresh fruits and vegetables contain a great amount of fiber and essential minerals that help detoxify the body.

Fresh Fruits And Vegetables Help Detoxify The Body.

Restrict the use of alcohol and sweetened carbonated water because there is nothing nutritious about them. Alcohol and smoking affect metabolism by slowing it down which can result in worsening of the cellulite.

Besides a healthy diet, the most effective and long lasting way of fighting cellulite is by performing cardiovascular exercises like jogging, cycling, running, and performing weight training exercises.

As you exercise, you sweat, which flushes out toxins from your body and reduces cellulite appearance. There are many great exercises and types of equipment that can burn calories and fat beneath the skin. There is an excellent selection of exercises which can target cellulite problem areas.

So are you one of those women who has to hide an area of dimpled, cottage cheesy flesh? If you said yes, then you’re pretty normal. Here is what to do!

Sad but true though, even women of ideal body weight can still have cellulite. Cellulite is alleged to be a special type of “fat gone wrong,” a combination of fat, water, and “toxic wastes” that the body has failed to eliminate.

Important:

The safest and long lasting way to reduce cellulite is by combining a low-fat diet with an appropriate exercise program that tones the underlying muscle. Therefore, an aerobic only exercise program aimed at burning fat is not enough.

Strength training is an important element in reducing the unsightly appearance of cellulite since it increases muscle tone and decreases total body fat. But the way you strength train is even more important. A program that targets fat loss in the lower body, specifically hips, thighs, abdomen and buttocks is ideal for most women.

The routines that I recommend for women with these goals in mind involve a 15-25-repetition concept, which also keeps the heart rate up. I also encourage that when training for shape, not size, that the exercises are performed with no rest between sets, only for a drink of water. This type of training will create more fat-burning muscle while still giving you a longer, leaner and shapely, not bulky body and can also be considered as a two in one system. Resistance training and cardio in one.

First, let’s discuss some of the physical issues that plague many women regarding body shape and body composition. Most women have the same issues. They want to become more firm and leaner, they want delicate feminine cuts, and they want to defeat the battle with the hips, thighs and back of the upper arms. In many cases, women want to not only firm up these problem areas, but they want to reduce the size of these areas.

Although nothing can replace the benefits of aerobic training for the heart, aerobic training does not tone muscle, and muscle tone is the only answer to the battle. Women need to incorporate lightweight training into their fitness routines in order to have the best body that they as an individual can possibly have.

In addition to the visible physical changes that will result from consistent resistance training, there are numerous health benefits that only resistance training can provide for women such as:

Slowing down the aging of the skeleton and increasing bone mass.

Improve the strength and function of tendons and ligaments.

Rev-up metabolism by building lean muscle. For every pound of lean muscle built, an additional 50 calories a day will be used.

Replaces the 1/2 pound of muscle that we lose each year as we age, beginning at around the age of 30.

There are many other benefits of resistance training, but those are several important ones. If properly done, your workout can not only give you that swimsuit model physique that you want, but it also can provide you with results that can reverse some of the inevitable results of aging.

It will in fact reduce and firm the areas that you battle with that won’t go away, no many how many aerobic classes you take.

The Bottom Line

The amount of fat in the body is determined by the individual’s eating and exercise habits, but the distribution of fat in the body is determined by heredity. In most cases reduction of a particular part can be accomplished only as part of an overall weight-reduction program.

Remember that you are never too old to begin. No matter if you are in your 20’s or your 80’s, if done properly and safely, resistance training can change your life by making you stronger, and firmer in a very feminine way.

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