5 Benefits for Women Lifting Weights
Why do people lift weights? Your first answer is probably simple—to build muscle! However, lifting weights has a wide range of additional benefits for women. Strength training can even become more important than cardio as we age, and muscle loss becomes a concern. What are the benefits for women lifting weights? We've put together a list of five in this post, and that just scratches the surface.
Why Should Women Lift Weights?
- Lose Weight – Cardio is a great tool to remove excess upper body and belly fat, but lifting weights helps to increase your muscle mass. When you have a higher amount of muscle, it is easier for your body to burn calories and fat. Why is that the case? Muscles are actually metabolically active. That means that, even when you are sleeping or standing still, your muscles are using energy. On average, muscle tissue can burn 7-10 calories per pound on a daily basis. In contrast, fatty tissue only burns 2-3 calories per pound every day.
- Preserve Muscle Mass – Weight training can help to retain the lean muscle mass that can be destroyed through vigorous aerobic workouts. If you are only using aerobic exercise to lose weight, you are losing weight from fat, bone and muscle. Women lifting weights add strength training into the equation, you can preserve bone and muscle mass and only get rid of fat.
- Increase Bone Density – As we age, our bones naturally become weaker and more brittle. That’s why a fall when you’re 65 is so much more dangerous than a fall when you are 45. Women lifting weights can increase their mineral bone density and improve their bone health. By putting pressure on joints in a safe fashion (weightlifting), you can encourage your bones to become stronger and more resilient.
- Manage Stress – Any type of exercise is a good way to improve your mood after a long day at work or a stressful encounter. Weightlifting releases feel-good hormones into your body that will give you a boost. Lifting also improves the muscles in your back and neck that tense up when you are stressed.
- Reduce Back Pain – While there could be a number of causes contributing to your back pain, muscle imbalances can be a key contributor. The aches and pains are often due to insufficient back or neck muscles. However, they could even be due to a weak core or poor hip flexors! If you lift weights, you can build strength throughout your body for excellent performance and less pain.
How Often Should You Lift Weights?
How often you workout is always determined by your daily life schedule, your overall condition, and your goals, but for the best possible results, women should lift weights at least twice a week. If you don’t have the time or the inclination to head to the gym, and you don't have weight equipment in your home gym, bodyweight exercises can also count as lifting weight! Over time, you can increase the amount of weight that you are able to lift. If you find that you enjoy weightlifting, you can bump your sessions up to as often as you would like, even once a day! But, as you workout more often, make sure that you are working different parts of the body, particularly if you're lifting on a daily basis. You want to take care to avoid overworking any one group of muscles. Now, go forth and get fit!
Let RX Fitness Equipment Help You Get Started
If you think you'd like to give weightlifting a look, but you'd like to discuss it with a professional, we work with hundreds of personal trainers and fitness coaches and we're happy to offer a referral to one that suits you. If you're looking for a great selection of fitness equipment and accessories, we carry the top brands to fit every goal and budget and we're here to make your fitness routine more productive. Stop by our store in Thousand Oaks or give us a call. And don't forget to check out Tim's best-selling book, Fitness Equipment – A Shopper's Guide, available at Amazon and other online book sellers as well as in our store.
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