Strength Training For Women: More than Just Weight Loss

When discussing weight training for women, the bulk of the emphasis is placed on weight loss and achieving a toned physique. However, there are lots of other benefits that come with strength training that many women do not know. Some of them backed by science!

Improved Brain Power

 A recent study pointed at strength training as an important factor when it comes to enhanced brainpower. In fact, at the end of the survey, participants presented a bigger sized brain in scans. A separate study showed how strength training was pivotal for memory boosts especially for older adults.  We await more research on this front, but these two studies should be enough to make you take your strength training regimen more seriously. People in Silicon Valley and students around the world are popping pills which they believe can improve cognition. You have the chance to achieve better results while enhancing your overall health.

Increased Life Span

An observational study analyzed the lives of adults in the 60s, taking note of how they exercised for 15 years. Over the course of the survey, one-third of the subjects died. The researchers noted that participants that had strength training regimes were almost 50% less likely to dies than the rest of the test subjects.  The study obviously had lots of limitation as it is unclear how lifestyle history affected the results. Other factors like workout frequency and types of strength training were also not covered, but nonetheless, it gives you something else to think about.

Improved Self Belief and Confidence

Of course, when you achieve a more streamlined appearance and hit your fitness goals, you will feel a lot more confident in yourself. Strength training, however, goes beyond this. When you start seeing results in your strength training, it seems like you have some added spring in your step to take on situations you would hitherto see as unthinkable in the past. With strength training, you will be able to open new frontiers regarding what you can achieve physically and mentally.

Increased Bone Strength

A recent study with 37 70-year-old women showed that strength training could increase your bone mineral density, preventing bone ailments like osteopenia and osteoporosis (which can put you away in a nursing home at that age).  You are probably in your 20s or 30s and wondering how that concerns you.  The fact, however, is that you will be better served to build bone density in your earlier days as it is maintained for life once built. You will be healthier (bone health-wise at least) if you are using strength training to progressively build your bone density before you are as old as the test subjects used.

Lifted Breasts

Do your boobs need a lift? Embrace strength training!  There is a general misconception that strength training exercises can reduce the size of a woman’s breasts. In reality, however, working out builds the muscles behind your breast tissue and the growth adds to the appearance of your boobs. It is the same mechanism behind the efficiency of lower body exercises for your butt.  The good thing about this is that strength training works for just about any woman including mothers recovering from breastfeeding.

Increased Metabolism

With strength training, your metabolism rate can remain elevated for up to 24 hours after the session.  The amount of calories you will burn is dependent on the intensity of the workout.  The post-session calorie burn is possible because, after an intense workout, there is an increase in oxygen consumption leading to the breakdown of fat stores in the body.

Reduced Back Pain and Improved Posture

Strength training targets your core, shoulders, and back. This can help you correct bad posture, with your shoulders and back straightening out, making you look taller.  When your back and core is stronger, the episodes of lower back pain will diminish.

Lowered Stress Levels and Enhanced Mood

Ever wondered why you suddenly feel great after a workout session? Strength training leads to the release of endorphins. These neurotransmitters shut out pain, tackle depression and improve your mood.  When released endorphins are at an optimal level, stress and anxiety are reduced. So with more strength training, you will be able to enjoy brighter days than gloomy days.

“But Won’t I Bulk Up?”

The same fear that keeps many women from taking advantage of strength training to ensure lifted boobs prevents them from getting on board strength training regimes. The misconception that muscles will develop and they will lose the feminine appearance should be cast aside. Science tells us that as a woman, the high levels of estrogen in your body means you will never naturally become as muscular as a man. Strength training will only make your muscles stronger and more toned, giving you a firmer appearance.

Tips to Get Started With Strength Training

If you don’t want to get an instructor or enroll in a class, here is what you need to do to start strength training right away.

Use your Body Weight

Using your body weight as the resistance is one of the best ways to get started on strength training. Some of the simplest exercises you can do include abdominal crunches, pull-ups, and pushups.

Use of free weights

Top options include barbells, weight bars, and dumbbells.

Use of weight machines

In many regular gyms, you can find circuit-style weight machines targeting different muscle areas.  Talk to your gym instructors on how to use these machines or look at diagrams that are usually attached.

It is time to take strength training more seriously!