Don't Fear The Barbell
I mean, this woman sleeps with them and look at the effect it has had on her! And I thought I loved weight training - this is real commitment to training. You've heard of sleepwalking? Welcome to sleep training: Training so amazing, you'll swear it was a dream! I joke because when it comes to women and weight training, myths abound! If this has kept you from incorporating weights into your routine, you have been missing out BIG TIME! Check out the facts:
Myth: Weight lifting is dangerous.
Fact: Yes! It can be! So can life, no matter how careful we are. Weight training, when done properly, is extremely safe. In fact, it can help prevent injury by improving the strength of the muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones. Stronger muscles and tendons help hold the body in proper alignment and while I bet the woman above is aligned quite nicely, she will appreciate it even more when she is in her 60's and beyond. I hope she continues to train!
Myth: Women shouldn't train like a man.
Fact: This is also true! Men make soooooo much noise with all their grunting, groaning, slamming the weights down after each set, belching and junk-scratching their way through their time in the gym and often leaving their sweaty calling-card all over each machine used! This is the gym equivalent of scent-marking territory, I mean- why else would you leave your puddle of toxic, steroid-laced perspiration there! Ladies: we don't need special exercises. BUT it is also NOT NECESSARY to arch your lower back and stick your bum out when doing standing cable triceps press, LOL...
Myth: Women work out to lose weight.
Fact: This should not be categorized as a myth but instead as a poor reason to work out. If it gets you started, great! But if this is your sole focus, we need to blast this to shreds! Why?! Consider first how you determined that you need to lose weight: the mirror or the scale, yes? When have they ever been your friends? I posit to you that it is society and vanity with its peer pressure and snap judgments. But whatever number you choose as good for you to weigh, what do you really know about that number? In other words, what percentage of that weight is:
I hope you see that without knowing the above percentages, how can you accurately determine what a good weight is? Weight is truly just a number and weighing yourself rarely provides positive feedback and seeing the numbers can actually discourage you against continuing a program if they go up or if you don't see them go down fast enough. Also, you can lose weight but have a higher percentage of body fat. Does that 5 lb. loss feel as good when you find that you lost muscle? Inversely, you can gain 5 lbs. but your measurements go down and you look better. Point: Weight alone is not a good benchmark of any fitness program and should not be its defining purpose!
Myth: Weight training will make me bulk up and look manly.
Fact: 'Nuff said! Thanks again to the lovely Ms. McLish. Seriously, we don't have the testosterone it takes to get manly - you need to juice for that, and I'm not talking Tropicana - I am amazed that women still believe this about weights!
Myth: If I stop weight training, my muscle will turn to fat.
Fact: You have already spent thousands on weight-loss gimmicks, have tried every crazy diet that comes along and will most likely continue down this path. How do I know! Well, if you believe that muscle can turn to fat (physiologically IMPOSSIBLE), you can easily be persuaded to believe other fictitious statements marketers ply the general public with. Never forget there is a multi-billion dollar industry hard at work. It tries to sleep with you also and while the woman above invited her dumbbells, trust me there is a marketing campaign trying to break in for some ménage à trois time.
Total Fact: Weight training, conducted properly, is safe, effective and beneficial at any age - you're never too old to start!