It’s the start of a new year and the start of new resolutions. I am sure most of you start a new year with health-related resolutions. If you ask women, many of them will say, Weight loss is their topmost resolution of the year. There are many myths around weight loss and that’s why many people do not achieve the desired goals. Eating healthy is important but it’s of no use if you are not physically active. I recently started lifting weights at home and in this post, I am sharing the benefits of strength training for women.
What is strength training?
Strength training in laymen’s language is lifting weights. It is a way to achieve a toned and fit body which is sometimes not possible with just cardio or another form of exercise. You can lose weight by running or jogging regularly but chances are that you might not get that toned look. Strength training helps you in that.
Also read, 5 simple exercises to be fit and healthy.
Myths around weight lifting for women –
Here are few myths which even I used to believe in until I learnt about it from my trainer –
- Lifting weights can make you look bulky – It’s a myth. Many women avoid lifting weights as they think it’s for men as it will lead to a bulky look. The truth is it is going to give you a toned look and not a bulky look if you do it properly. You might not notice any change in your weight as you gain muscle mass which is better than fat mass in your body.
- You have to lift heavy weights – This is what I used to think before I started my strength training journey. I started with just 2kgs dumbbells at home and that is the right way to do it. You can even start with 1 kg. Slowly increase it and take it slow. If you are just trying to get a toned body, simple weight lifting is fine. These are the ones that I use. you can check them out at Amazon but do check out with your trainer first.
-It is only for young women – It is a myth and you can do it at any age provided you are under the right guidance.
Benefits of strength training for women –
- Better mental health – This is from my personal experience. I have observed that it helps to reduce anxiety and helps you to relax.
- Better bone and joint health – With age, women start losing muscle mass and that’s why staying physically active is good for better bone and joint health.
- Fat loss without getting bulky – Strength training will help you to lose fat. That’s the right way to go as we do not need fat in our bodies. Fat makes us look bulky and not muscle mass.
- Better health – Lifting weights can help you to reduce cholesterol. So, better heart health. It can help you to stay away from aches and pains and less chances of osteoporosis.
Foods to help you with strength training –
You don’t need some fancy foods or a fancy meal plan. Just make sure you get enough proteins in your diet and avoid refines carbs and too many sugars. Include healthy fat items like chia seeds and avocadoes. Make sure you are getting enough calories too. Have a good mix of carbs and proteins 60-90 minutes before strength training and a snack post-workout like a banana, whole wheat sandwich with tofu/paneer/chicken, yoghurt etc.
Please note, f you are a beginner and not doing too much weight lifting, then you don’t need too many modifications in your diet. Just Make sure you are eating a well-balanced diet. Only when you are doing advanced strength training, you need more proteins in your diet.
The best way to go for a healthy and toned body is to go with a mix of cardio and strength training. The motto is to start and not stress! So, buy those dumbbells and start lifting but make sure you check with a professional first. But I would say, it’s never too late to start. I know a few ladies in their 50’s and ’60s in my gym who do it regularly. So, get going!
These are from my personal experience with strength training for women. I would recommend you to check with your trainer or professional once before starting.