Exercise myths part II

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Does this picture on the right scares you? Does your mind immediately relate these free weights with huge muscles, broad shoulders, big chest and a manly figure? Well, if you are a guy and if you lift heavy enough, this could happen to you and it is actually a good thing. For women’s out there, who hear about lifting weights and immediately say no, I don’t like to bulk up, I have a breaking news for you.

Lifting weights do not make women bulk up. Why? Because we (women) do not have as much testosterone as men do.  In order for women to bulk up and look like bodybuilders, they must eat a diet very high in calorie and protein and lift super heavy weights with tons of repetition. So girl friend, relax you are not going to look like Arnold by lifting 20 lb weights.

Now you might ask, why should I lift weights anyway? Let me answer this question with more questions.

  • Do you like to have a more toned, defined and slim body?
  • Would you like to get rid of those bat wings, which flap, when you wave goodbye?
  • Would you like to have a round bottom?
  • Would you like to get rid of those not so cute dimples on your thighs?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you got your reason to lift weights.

So how much weight should I lift? The short answer is, it depends. Long answer, if you are trying to lose weight at the same time as toning your body, you need to lift so heavy that you will be able to go trough 10-12 reps with perfect form. If you are happy with your weight and you just like to get more toned and define, then go heavier so you will only be able to do 6-8 reps with perfect form.

“But free weights are so expensive and take lots of space, I am not sure if I am up for that!” Here are two solutions for you:

  1. Use resistance bands. They are much cheaper and very easy to store. You can get the same results using the resistance band as long as you are using the appropriate level of resistance.
  2. Use your body weight. You don’t have to use expensive free weight to tone your arms. Drop down and do push ups. Hold a plank for 60 seconds and work your ABS. Do a downward dog with leg raise to work your glutes and shoulders at the same time.

Bottom line, if you want to get toned, you need to train your muscles with weights. It can be your body weight, resistance bands or dumbbells. And, no you will not bulk up and get too muscular.

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Stay happy and healthy

Roya

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