Concentrated Woman Lifting WeightMaybe you don’t lift weights because you’re worried about being Arnold Schwarzenegger buff. Don’t be. One big reason men are able to gain so much bulk with weight training is testosterone. Women have far less testosterone so we don’t have to worry about looking like Rocky (the fictional prize fighter for those younger than women of a certain age). So now that all worries have been laid to rest let’s focus on the good reasons to get in the weight training game.

Burn more fat

Cardio is great for losing weight and burning fat, unfortunately, you will also lose some muscle. Add weight training to your fitness regimen to lose weight by building muscle and burning fat. The muscle you build will help to keep your metabolism humming along so your body burns calories more efficiently, even when you are not exercising. Want some even better news? Weight training is a very effective way to burn belly fat. Belly fat, or visceral fat, has been closely associated with increased risk of health problems such as diabetes, stroke, heart disease and high blood pressure.  So if you want to improve your overall health and finally get rid of that muffin top lift a kettle ball and send that unsightly pouf packing.

Boost bone density

Weight training helps you build stronger bones. As women age our risk of fracture or osteoporosis becomes greater. You can minimize this risk by lifting weights. Women begin losing muscle at around age 30. Bone loss accelerates with menopause. Without intervention we average only about 55% muscle left by age 70. You can reverse these declines with weight training.

Gain to lose

Woman Lifting WeightsA big reason many women weight train is they like what they see and how they feel. That’s because regular weight training can help you gain confidence as well as lose a dress size or two. Although muscle weighs more, unlike fat it is lean and compact so you will lose inches and look slimmer in your clothes.

Fear of falling can rob women of confidence and independence as we age. Be proactive with weight training. Start where you are, even if you lift while sitting. You don’t have to be able to lift heavy weights to reap the benefits of weight training either. In fact, performing more reps with lighter weights is just as effective for building muscle. Lower weights give you all the benefits of lifting heavier weights without increased risk of injury. Include weight training in your exercise plan at least three days each week. Stay strong.