How Can Lifting Weights Help Me?
Cardio has an array of plus points, but if you want to get in shape, blast away fat and become physically stronger, strength training is certainly something to consider.
Gone are the old school thoughts about weightlifting causing sturdy, male physiques, and making people appear ‘bulky’. This way of thinking is more common across women, but as time goes on, it’s soon becoming a very dated way of thinking.
If you have toyed with the idea of weight training and lifting weights, here’s several benefits as to why it could be the fitness hack you’ve been missing:
It’s key for burning body fat
When you build more muscle, it becomes easier to keep burning away fat. And there is sufficient science behind this incase you’re wondering how this can happen. When you lift weights, you are technically increasing your lean body mass. This raises the number of calories you burn daily. Many people picture running on treadmills as the quickfire way to burn off those calories, but by consistently lifting weights, you start to build muscle and burn fat and calories at the same time.
It’s great for stomach toning
While it’s still important to add in an element of cardio to your fitness regime for a full body workout, weights can also contribute to getting a toned tummy.
Think about it. When you begin a workout which involves lifting heavy weights, your posture and core start to correct themselves and work hard. Your abs will be given a workout, even if you’re not localising the workout exactly to your abs.
It gives you a defined look
There is something strong and inspiring about a defined, fit and lean appearance. One of the ways to achieve this is to build definition, in which weights come in handy. Definition is created by toned, lean muscles forming, which ultimately is helped along by regular weightlifting.
It’s worth bearing in mind that women have lower testosterone levels, so it’s hard to get ‘bulky’ from lifting heavy weights. But if you are a little cautious, or it’s difficult to get into at first, lift lighter and more often first, before ramping up the weight size.
Weights can strengthen up your bones
Often people assume that weightlifting is really only for training your muscles, which is untrue. Weights train your bones too, as when you practice an arm curl, your muscles start to tug lightly on your arm bone. Your bones have cells, which start to react when this happens, creating new bone cells, hence becoming stronger and denser.
Of course, if you choose to lift weights quite sporadically and not so regimented, strengthening your bones may take longer to achieve. The key here is consistency, as lifting heavy weights regularly over a longer period of time maintains bone mass and, in some cases,, can build new, stronger bone.
Along with building a stronger, leaner and more defined body, weightlifting can help to prevent injury further down the line. Lifting weights ultimately strengthens muscles, which means the muscles surrounding your joints will become more resistant, preventing injuries especially around the knees and hips.
Overall, it’s about variety. If you enjoy cardio and it works for you, then work to bring in elements of weightlifting. Keeping your workouts fresh and exciting is just as important as consistency, and if you have never introduced weights before, now could be a great time to try!