What it is and why it’s important
If your exercise routine is primarily focused on cardio and you haven’t been seeing the results you had hoped for, then you should try strength training!
What it is:
Strength training (also known as Resistance Training) can be applied to your workout by using some form of resistance, such as; free weights, resistance bands, and body weight. Strength training helps the body burn fat, build strength, and maintain bone health. Incorporating strength training into your gym routine will enable your body to keep ‘working’, even after you set the weights down; this is known as ‘after-burn’!
But… I don’t want to bulk up!
Most women forego the weight rack (strength training) and rely on the treadmill (cardio exercise) to achieve their fitness goals. This is primarily because women do not want to build muscle mass and look ‘bulky’, unlike their male counterparts. But, fear no more! The female hormone estrogen makes it difficult for women to ‘bulk up.’ Instead of becoming too muscular, women that utilize weight training will improve their strength, endurance, overall fitness and over time your muscles become toned and your body will burn fat tissue.
Lose weight: Muscle burns fat! Strength training (using some form of resistance) speeds up your metabolism (the rate your body processes food for energy) dramatically and results in weight loss.
Bone Health: Strength training increases bone density and reduces the risk for osteoporosis and bone related injuries such as; tears, fractures and broken bones.
Improve Hearth Health: According to the American Heart Association, strength training twice per week will strengthen your heart and reduce the risk of multiple heart-related health issues.
Strength training is NOT something to avoid – women should be excited about it! It will not only help you lose weight, improve bone health, achieve fitness goals, improve sleep quality, and lower blood pressure, but you will be proud of your results. When you look in the mirror after a hard work out and see your progress, you will be excited to come back to the gym tomorrow for more strength training!