Not many women know that weightlifting offers plenty of fitness benefits to them. But if you are one of those women who has already decided to go down this fitness route, then you are most definitely on the right track!
However, please be reminded that strength training for women is one fitness program that you can easily do wrong. Since weightlifting is an unfamiliar territory for women, we are here to remind you that there are a few things that you should and should not do during your weightlifting session.
The Do’s and Don’ts to Keep in Mind
To help you to enjoy a successful weightlifting journey, these are the do’s and don’ts that you should keep in mind:
1. Do Set SMART Goals.
When it comes to setting fitness goals, you must set it smart, measurable, achievable, realistic targets (SMART). Doing weight lifting without any goals may be fun but it will get you nowhere. However, you should be careful in ensuring that your goals are achievable and realistic because when you get too ambitious, there is a big chance that you won’t hit your target and it will make you feel like a failure, which will surely negatively impact your fitness motivation.
2. Do Not Forget To Rest.
For your information, muscle growth occurs while you are resting and not while working out. Because of this, not taking enough rest between workouts will prevent your muscles from recovering and eventually, growing. Not only will it fail to grow; it will also fail to show its maximum strength potential during workouts.
As a rule of thumb, weightlifters should take a rest for 48 hours before working out the same major muscle groups again. But if you aim to train other major muscle groups, you are free to do so! If you wish to completely take a break from weightlifting, you can try out other compound exercises instead.
3. Do Incorporate Compound Movements.
Compound exercises are the secret to building muscles. Since these movements involve the use of several joints, they maximize the use of our muscle fibers and motor neurons. These exercises also positively affect the hormonal response of the body which helps in the burning of fats and the building of muscles.
4. Do Not Forget To Spice Things Up A Bit.
Our body easily adapts to the activities that we do. When you do the same movements over and over, the body becomes efficient in doing that. While that may sound good, doing the same thing again and again will also lead to fitness plateau and it will come to the point when you will no longer shed excess fats and build muscles. Because of this, it is recommended that you implement periodization in your workouts.
5. Do Strength Training Twice A Week.
Many people think that the more frequent they will do strength training, the more effective it will be. But according to Pain Science, less is always more when it comes to strength training. In fact, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends that you incorporate strength training exercises for all major muscle groups into your weekly fitness routine for two to three times a week.
6. Do Not Forget Your Weightlifting Belt.
Weightlifting belt is an important accessory in the weightlifting game. Many people think that the importance of wearing weightlifting belts is connected to safety and risk of injury during the session. But a weightlifting belt is created for a purpose much greater than that.
Bodybuilding.com reveals that the main reason why weightlifters, especially women, are advised to wear these belts is because the belt adds support by increasing the abdominal pressure. Because of this, you get to achieve a more rigid torso which acts as a more stable foundation when doing lifts.
When choosing a weightlifting belt, it is recommended that you opt for one with a size between 3-4 inches round from the front to the part portion. It must also be made of suede or leather and avoid any materials that stretch. Lastly, if you are not comfortable with wearing a weightlifting belt, you will be happy to know that you do not have to wear it at all times. The use of this belt is only a must when doing compound lifts using weights that you cannot easily support.
7. Do Take Workout Supplements.
Many people think that taking workout supplements for women is no longer needed as long as you stick to a healthy diet. But one thing that you have to understand is the fact that it is impossible for you to get all the nutrients that you need to help your muscles grow and recover from your usual diet. In fact, studies show that protein supplementation may enhance not only muscle mass but its performance as well.
With this in mind, it is highly recommended that you take a few bodybuilding supplements including creatine monohydrate (for muscle building), caffeine (for boosting energy), BCAA or Branched Chain Amino Acid (to reduce muscle soreness and damage), Citrulline Malate (for physical fatigue), NO boosters (for increasing muscle blood flow and better strength), whey protein post workout supplements (for improving the muscles’ ability to recover after the exercise), and fish oils (for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties).
For A Successful Strength Training Journey
There is no denying the fact that strength training or weight lifting is the most effective way for women to achieve the fit and strong body that they have always wanted. But no matter how effective this program can be, women must be reminded that this fitness program can be quite tricky and that there are a few do’s that they need to follow to make it as effective as possible. In addition to that, there are also a few don’ts to follow to avoid injuries and other risks.
To make the most out of your strength training journey, it is highly recommended that you follow the do’s and don’ts mentioned above. Rest assured, you will have an effective, hassle-free and safe strength training journey ahead of you!
Emily is founder of BodyShape101, a blog where she and her associates talk about exercise, fitness, and yoga. Their aim is to help people like you to achieve perfect body. BodyShape101 is concentrated on exercise & fitness tips, and making the most out of it. She is also a mother of one and she tries to find balance between her passion and her biggest joy in life.