The Truth About Females and Lifting Heavy Weights
By Flavia Del Monte – RN, CPT, Precision Nutrition Certified
Expressing fear of building muscle and looking like a man by merely hitting the weights is like me saying “I don’t want to play golf because I’m afraid I’ll turn pro….”
Nothing just happens – including building muscle! If your body was destined to look like a man,than you would probably already know it! Genetics don’t change over night….
Unless you have a river of testosterone flowing in your blood, the fear of getting big is unfounded! Competitive female bodybuilders train at least three hours a day and perform 20-30 sets PER body part with their womens fitness programs in hopes of getting a fraction of the size of their male counterparts.
GETTING BIG IS NO EASY TASK FOR A FEMALE… and if it were than you would see Jane swinging from the vines and swimming with the alligators, not Tarzan!
Simply put, this myth has no scientific backbone. It is very hard for most men to build muscle; let alone women. I hear of men who are eating thousands of calories and lifting heavy weight but don’t put a pound of lean muscle mass on their bodies. Yet, females are afraid lifting weights will make them look like a man!
Not only lifting weight, but lifting heavy weight will give you definition and that toned look that is desired from EVERY female all over the world.
YOU CANNOT LOOK LIKE A MAN FROM LIFTING HEAVY WEIGHTS, UNLESS YOU TRY (REALLY HARD) TO DO SO, I
NJECT TESTOSTERONE INTO YOUR BUTT OR A GENETIC FREAK!
THE Cold-Hard SCIENCE
First off, men have 10 to 30 times higher levels of testosterone than females.
Women do not have a large testosterone production in their body, making it impossible to build muscle at the same intensity as a male. A male is made up of a lot more muscle than women. 23% of a women’s weight is muscle, compared to 40% of a male’s weight.
Women simply do not have the genetics to build muscle and the women that have done so, have done so by genetically altering their bodies.
I can take a guess that most women want a TONED look. When your muscles look etched, it is because of a low percentage of fat around that muscle.
Toning and muscle building is one in the same!
There are 3 ways growth occurs in muscles:
- during resistance training (followed with precise nutrition)
- natural growth period (such as puberty)
- during pregnancy
In order to build lean mass, you must have an excess of calories:
energy in > energy out
That said, in order build muscle, you MUST tailor your diet for muscle building. That applies to women who want to “TONE”. You have to first BUILD the muscle in order to have a toned look.
Increase in CALORIES + lifting heavy = muscle mass
There are three different body types:
- ectomorph (naturally thin)
- mesomorph (naturally muscular)
- endomorph (naturally broad and thick)
All three different body types need to eat and train a certain way in order to build muscle and lose fat.
The issue here is that there is only so much storage in a muscle. You need to lift heavy weight in order to increase the size of your muscle.
If, in the unlikely chance of too much muscle being built, all you would need to do is drop the weight, and take in less calories.
Resistance training is essential to a balanced and effective training program. You need to lift heavy in order to build muscle.
You cannot change your genetics to the degree to look like a man if you are a women unless you are “trying” to do so by working out at least 2-3 hours a day and lifting 20-30 sets per body part. I am guessing you don’t do that? I didn’t think so, so flush that fear down the toilet.
Questions for Flavia? Post them below. Please keep your questions SPECIFIC to the topic of this article. Thanks
–Flavia Del Monte
R.N., C.P.T., PN Certified