Having trained thousands of people to reach their fat loss or fitness goals a common question always arises when training new female clients, ‘Won’t lifting weight make me muscly?’. This is a common misconception and the truth is that every women should do weight training as it has many important health benefits, this include:
Anti aging – In 1991 Tuffs University established the factors which influence how we age. They found various markers for longevity, of which the key indicators were identified. The study clearly recognised the influence of strength and muscle mass. They concluded the more muscle you have and the more strength in those muscles, the longer you will live.
Osteoporosis – This effects 3 million people in the UK and women over 50 have a 1 in 2 chance of a fracture. Lifting weight maintains bone mineral density and helps prevent or reverse symptons (Layne 1999, Kelly 2001).
Fat Loss – When performed correctly weight training is a more rapid and effective short and long term solution for fat loss than cardiovascular exercise (CV). This is because lifting weights increases lean muscle mass and the more muscle you have they more calories you will burn during exercise and at rest. This muscle doesn’t have to be visible muscle either!
Insulin Sensitivity – Weight training improves the control of blood sugar levels and can reduce the incidences of diabetes mellitus (Eriksson 1997, Ishii 1998).
Stops you from slowing down – The older you get the more you start to slow down. This can be caused by not accessing certain fibres within your muscles. Lifting weights in a certain way helps you access powerful type 2x muscle fibres and prevents them from being wasting (Turner 2009).