Go big or go home: why women need to lift heavy

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Cardio only gets you so far

lift heavyMore and more women are stepping out of their comfort zone and lifting weights, which is great news because the benefits of weight training greatly outweigh those of cardio. Cardio may burn calories, but once you step off the treadmill that effect ends. With weights, you build muscle which allows you to burn fat all day long. Unfortunately, most ladies still avoid lifting heavy with the fear of getting too bulky. This couldn’t be further from the truth and is a shame since recent studies show that women may benefit from heavy lifting even more than men. Here’s why you should lift heavy.

Ask a bodybuilder

Bodybuilding is no where near easy. Especially since women don’t produce as much testosterone as men do, they need way more than just heavy lifting to look the way they do. Hormone injections are needed to get big and bulky, so you have nothing to worry about! Moreover, strength training can help you unlock some amazing health benefits that you shouldn’t miss out on just because someone told you women should only lift light.

Lift heavy for less fat and powerful muscles

lift heavySince women can’t get bigger muscles than men, they should lift heavier to improve their muscle strength and definition. When it comes to weight training, one of the key differences between male and female bodies is that the first relies more on testosterone whereas the latter relies more on growth hormone to increase muscle and bone strength. Lifting heavy (3-4 reps per set) helps maximize growth hormone production in women, which is a good thing. This hormone is vital for metabolic function and muscle and bone development. The more growth hormone stimulated, the bigger the benefits of the workout.

One recent study found that growth hormone was most responsive to moderate (about 12 reps) to heavy (about 3 reps) lifting regimens. Being afraid of heavy weights will only limit your gains! Also, just having the muscle allows you to burn fat while resting, helping you achieve your goal body sooner and easier than from just cardio alone. There are many other benefits that women can get from lifting. Many large studies have shown that strength training lowers blood pressure and levels of bad cholesterol, increases bone density and helps prevent osteoporosis, normalizes stress levels and even eliminates symptoms of depression. If you lift heavy, you may also sleep better and have increased energy levels.

What’s holding you back from lifting heavy?

 


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