by JKoi of The Koi Experience
Ok, I have my first confession to make. I have an addiction. Ok, I have a few, but the one I will talk about today is weight training. I have a sick infatuation with it. No, for real. I love the feeling of picking up a semi heavy weight and slinging that iron all over the gym. The looks of men when I walk over to the rack and grab something heavier than 10 lbs, like “She knows that’s too heavy for her,” then when I put that thing to work, the consensus is, “DAAAAAMMMNNNNN!” Then, when I’m done, my heart rate is crazy, my arms, legs, back, abs are shaking and I’m seeing these curves start forming everywhere—no it’s not fat rolls, it’s pure unadulterated muscle. I feel like I could punch a hole in a brick wall and it feels great! I think muscles on women are one of the sexiest attributes we have—it shows that not only do we have inner strength, but we are capable of outer strength as well.
“Well, of course you would think that, you’re a freakin’ MARINE. It’s your job to be all strong and stuff.”
No people. Yes, we are required to be physically fit … but there’s no requirement for women to weight train. In fact, I am usually one of the very few women hitting the weights in the gym, yes even the ones on base. So I have to deal with the awkwardness of being alone on the heavy side of the weight room, while my female counterparts are hitting up those pretty colored ones making sure that they don’t sweat their makeup off — or there are the diehard Cardio Queens who wouldn’t touch a weight unless the Commanding General ordered them to.
“Ok. Well, I’m still not convinced. I’m not giving up on cardio and I don’t want to look like a man or lift anything heavier than my purse!”
Ah so! Still not convinced? Well, not only will I give you reasons, but also a gift at the end!
- You Will Be Physically Stronger. Chores will be easier, lifting kids, groceries and laundry will no longer push you to the max. Not to mention, you will increase joint stability and reduce your chance of injuries. It’s good for your bones. So yeah, weight lifting keeps you from breaking a hip and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. Soon you will be able to hang with the guys, because women develop strength as fast as men do.
- You Will Lose Body Fat. The more you weight train, the more muscles you develop. The more muscle, the more fat you will burn off. It’s not that big ol’ bulky muscle that men have, it’s lean and defined muscle, which can put your metabolism into overdrive – it burns fat so all that squish will go away and some nice toned arms will be revealed.
- You Will Gain Strength Without Bulk. Women develop muscle tone and definition. This is a bonus. It is impossible for women to get super big, because we don’t develop enough testosterone to do so. Now for those ladies that are big … well trust me, it’s not natural. One of my closest friends is a natural bodybuilder and she is absolutely ripped, but she is definitely not huge.
- You Will Improve Your Athletic Performance. So you love your cardio? Zumba is your thing, maybe yoga? How about sports? Whatever the activity, strength training has been shown to improve overall performance as well as decrease the risk of injury. So yes … strength training can make you better at cardio related activities, who would have thought!
- You Will Improve Your Attitude And Fight Depression. My favorite reason of them all. Hitting the weights has truly become my therapy. Not feeling good? Then train. Not happy? Then train. Need an instant mental and mood boost? Then train! The science is simple! If you suffer from feeling down at times or serious depression, then you can find solace in weight training! When you train, you receive instant release of “feel good” hormones called endorphins. You enjoy a feeling of accomplishment after you finish your workout. You know if you can achieve getting through your grueling hard core weight training workout, you can achieve anything!
“Ok, ok I got it, I have SEEN THE LIGHT!! Now where’s my gift?”
Since you are excited about giving weight training a chance, you may not know where to start. So I will give you the guidelines that I used when I began to take weight training seriously: The Female Training Bible made by the wonderful people at BodyBuilding.com.
It gave me everything I needed to know about how to start a weight training program and how to incorporate cardio into it as well, so I can have full benefits of each.
In the future I will start posting up nice little routines that you can follow as well just to change it up, because remember, your body can get used to the same thing over and over again, so you have to keep your muscles guessing.
So you tell me, what has prevented you from weight training? If you are a beginner and would like to write about your first experience weight training, contact me and you will be spotlighted in an upcoming series of The Koi Experience!
Shine on …