Over my years in working in the fitness industry I have noticed that there is a lot of women who are afraid of doing weights, especially heavy weights, in fear of bulking up.
Let me assure you that it is incredibly hard for women to bulk up the way that men do because we don't have the same levels of testosterone as men (testosterone helps to build muscles) so with the little amount that us women have, it makes it harder to get muscle gains in the way that men do.
I often go to the gym and lift heavy weights along with doing bodyweight training at home or outdoors. For me it's about getting stronger but also weight training is great for us women that are in our mid thirties and upwards because it can help to prevent onset osteoporosis too.
I often hear the phrase 'muscle weighs more than fat', which isn't true, a pound of fat and a pound of muscle weigh exactly the same, it's just that the fat will take up more space than the muscle. Therefore, when we do weight training and build lean muscle our bodies naturally shrink because muscle is denser than fat. This is why constantly checking the scales when doing weight training is pointless because there might not be a huge difference. The best way to see the changes is by taking regular progress photos, seeing how your clothes feel and taking measurements.
I don't only weight train, I also use High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), cardiovascular exercise such as running and biking, I also walk and use a lot of relaxation techniques such as pilates and meditation to help with my own wellbeing.
If you are going to the gym and mainly do cardio, start adding some weight training into your programme, trust me - you will start to see some improvements. Also don't be afraid to keep increasing the weights as you get stronger - I love having the strength to lift my children easily when we're playing, or for carrying stuff around the house without having to rely on a man.
Just a reminder that 'toning up' is having muscle tone and less fat, as you build muscle your metabolism increases because your body works harder at rest, meaning that you're turning your body into a fat burning furnace!
On our Boot Camp we mix elements of bodyweight strength training, weights training, HIIT and Cardiovascular Fitness to make it an all round successful programme. As a Personal Trainer and Lifestyle coach of over fourteen years experience, I have tried and tested a lot of models and the boot camp programme has been my most successful to date, not only because of the style of exercise, but also because of our fantastic support system that focuses on regaining health through healthy nutrition and mindset.
With love Debbie x
Are your current lifestyle choices making you happy?