Does Lifting Weights Cause Weight Gain And Bulkiness in Women?
Why Women Should Not Fear Heavy Weights
Women, are you afraid of lifting heavy weights because you think it will make you gain weight or become bulky? If so, do you head for the lighter weights or avoid weights altogether? Contrary to popular belief, women do not gain weight or bulk up by lifting heavy weights. Heavy weights ensure muscle tone and strength. Lifting light weights with many repetitions does not strengthen or tone muscles effectively.
Testosterone is the culprit for large increases in muscle mass. Therefore, men have a tendency for large increases in muscle mass due to their high levels. Most women, on the other hand, have only a fraction of the testosterone that men have.
For women, lifting heavy weights is the only way to become toned and shapely. The formula for achieving these goals is to maximize the amount of calories burned. Not only does your body burn more calories lifting the heavier weights, the body continues to burn calories even after the workout, prompting the process of repairing muscle fibers that were damaged during the weight lifting itself. This is known as building lean muscle. Building muscles, while burning off the excess fat, increases metabolism, which in turn, burns more calories throughout the day.
A pound of muscle, does in fact, weigh the same as a pound of fat, but muscle takes up a lot less room. If the scale inches up slightly, it is coming from water gain because more water is retained by active muscle tissue. Your muscles begin to store more carbohydrates in the form of glycogen. Glycogen has a tendency to hold on to water. After a while, your muscles adjust and don’t retain as much of the glycogen. At that point, the weight begins to come back down.
The only thing women are going to gain by lifting heavy weights is a leaner more defined body. So if you think all of a sudden you have bigger thighs, it is not from lifting heavy weights, but either from a temporary water retention or from consuming more calories than the amount being burned. Being obese and out of shape will make you look and feel years beyond your age, while building lean muscle and being fit will improve your health and appearance by building strength, reducing the potential for injury, increasing metabolism, and elevating the good cholesterol levels.
If your goal to is to have shapely toned muscle then you should lift heavy weights. On the other hand, if you only want to loose weight then you don’t even have to exercise. What you eat will determine how much weight you gain or loose. If you want to be healthy, then do both. There are other health benefits of exercise that you will miss if you only diet. Furthermore, the American Heart Association recommends 30 mins of cardio daily and resistance training 2 times per week.