Wednesday, December 28, 2011

learn to LOVE strength training.

As you all know, I’m a girl and I get a little saddened when I see fellow ladies constantly exercising and dieting without seeing any results. Is it because they’re not taking pills, extreme dieting, or not exercising enough? NO. The solution to looking more toned, maintaining a healthy weight, and feeling stronger is developed through strength training. Yes, strength training is an intense activity that ladies tend to avoid but if it were easy wouldn’t we all look like celebrities? (Not that we should strive for that… but you guys know what I mean!) I’m not going to sugar coat this by saying it’s a piece of cake; strength training is something you gotta learn to love! My fascination with strength training did not happen overnight in fact, I’m pretty sure I hated it and didn’t think I could benefit from it. So, I went through a phase of doing yoga every single day. I did get definition, muscle tone in places that I never thought possible, and felt more connected but, I became bored and wanted to try a new challenge. My first encounter with lifting weights started really small and within a few months I constructed a routine for myself. I’m learning that lifting weights as little as twice a week has increased my strength, posture, and confidence tremendously! Oh, ya.

Amazing Benefits from Strength Training:
  • You will increase your metabolic rate. Strength training increases your metabolic rate by increasing the calories you burn through the day.  So, when your body burns calories the more fat you’re going to burn. In other words you shouldn’t deprive yourselves from eating holiday cookies! Hehe ;)
  • You will burn calories at a resting heart rate. A pound of muscle burns about a dozen calories a day while a pound of fat only burns 5 calories. Muscle tissue growth helps you burn more calories and will increase your metabolic rate all day long! So this means you’ll still be burning while you’re: sleeping, watching television, or sitting at your desk.
  • You will develop stronger bones, improve your posture, and prevent injury. Muscle growth plays a huge role in increasing bone density which reduces the risk of osteoporosis which is common in women. It also helps protect your joints from injuries and holds & lifts your body better allowing you to appear taller and feel more confident.
3 Things you won’t get from Pumpin’ Iron:
  • Bulk! Ladies we just don’t have the hormonal makeup for this to be possible! The only way you’ll look like a pile of bulk is if you take steroids… It frustrates me when girls refuse to lift weights for this reason! Though you will gain is strength, lean muscle mass, and stamina; which is awesome!
  • Death Injures! Injuries only occur when you’re posture is improper or if you overwork your muscles.  With that said the burning sensation experience you’ll feel in your muscles won’t injure nor kill you! The muscles are simply producing lactic acid which challenges them and makes them stronger. I don’t know about you but that feeling is like hitting the jackpot!
  • Depression. Strength training is a great way to release stress and anxiety. Just ask anyone else who consistently trains their muscles and as a sufferer of anxiety, I can honestly say my stress has decreased immensely!
I hope this helped clarify any misconception of strength training; just remember that you should never forgo your other workout routines. Cardio is essential for increasing cardiovascular health, increasing energy, and strengthening your lungs. Try adding strength training as a supplement to your usual workout routines and be prepared for some maximum results! Stay tuned for more fitness inspired posts and obviously a recipe ;)

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