You’re allowed to laugh at my expression ( I did the first time I saw this picture)… I’ll have you know that it is advised to exhale on exertion while doing strength exercises so….!
I’ve been asked about my strength training routine. I usually aim for 2 strength (heavy weights) sessions per week… on Tuesdays and Saturdays. I won’t go into detail about my strength training now, I’ll leave that for another post…
Strength training won’t make you bulky and muscular. This is a common misconception amongst women and just in case you have any doubts, look at the pictures of me in my gallery – do I look like a muscle-bound? Your answer had better be NO! (haha)
Women have 15-20 times less testosterone (hormone that helps men gain muscle) than men.
Studies have shown that regular strength training results in lean muscle gain and close to twice the fat loss in weight (exactly what you’d like to hear).
Health benefits of strength training include increasing bone density, reduces the risk of health issues including diabetes and heart disease, lowers blood pressure and more.
And of course it makes you stronger
Have I sold it to you a little? Here are a couple of tips to get you started:
- If you have access to a fitness professional e.g. at your gym, ask to be shown the correct technique for strength exercises.
- Your aim should be to have 2-3 strength sessions a week. Start of with one and slowly build up to 2 or 3.
- For every exercise, aim for 10-12 repetitions and 2-3 sets (of 10-12 reps). Each rep should be slow an controlled.
- Always start with a light weight initially and slowly increase for each set until you find the right weight. The aim is for the last few reps to be almost impossible.
- If you have no idea what exercises to do, try this:
5-10 minute warm up – jogging, cycling or some bodyweight drills including jumping jacks, high-knees, etc
Squats – These are mainly for your glutes (bum), quads (front of thighs) and hamstrings (back of thighs). Ideally these should be done with free weights – a barbell (on the back of your shoulders) or dumbells (arms hanging on your sides). But it’s best to get your squat technique* right before you progress to variations of weighted squats.
Chest Presses – Pectorals (chest muscles) or my favourite (NOT!) Pressups (technique is extra important with these)
Bicep Curls – Biceps (front of the upper arms)
Shoulder Presses (like my picture above) -Deltoids (shoulders) and Triceps (back of upper arms)
Crunches – Abdominal muscles
Remember – aim for at least 2 sets of 10-12 reps of each exercise. Rest should be a maximum of 1 minute between each set.
Stretch (I’ll blog about this in detail)
Start tomorrow – fat burning, healthier heart, healthier body. What are you waiting for?