Lift More, Lose More
If you want to shed fat and sculpt a shapely physique, then pick up the weights
I think one of the biggest misconceptions out there is that moms and women in general don’t lift weights, and don’t need to. Wow, this could not be further from the truth! I often hear women say, “I build muscle so easy, or building muscle will make me look bulky.” Truly building muscle is no easy task; it takes time, proper nutrition, and consistency. Bottom line is, you don’t build muscle over night and will never look like a bodybuilder by engaging in a weekly weight training routine.
Lifting weights has truly become one of my passions. I have to admit, I was one of those moms (prior to competing) who was cardio obsessed. Once I started lifting and began to see the changes in my body however, I began to understand more about the benefits of lifting. Losing weight is one thing… it’s a simple equation of calories in versus calories out. If you eat less and burn more, then you will eventually lose weight. This, however, was not my goal. My goal was to look more tone, tight, and fit, which can only be achieved by building lean muscle mass. Building muscle in the right places gives our bodies shape and curve.
In my opinion, one of the best habits moms can get into is a weekly lifting routine. Lifting weights is an amazing stress reliever, and is great for a women’s overall health. After kids, most of us will see more results if we add weight training into our weekly workout routines. Another great benefit of lifting is the personal accomplishment that comes from pushing our bodies and challenging our minds. Remember ladies: you simply won’t get big from lifting weights. You will get tone, tighter, and ultimately increase your metabolism.
So what will this look like and how will you support your new weight training workouts? Well, the nice thing about lifting weights is you don’t have to do it every day; a solid routine can be done in three to four sessions per week. To make it simple, split your upper body into two parts (back/biceps and shoulders/triceps) and lower into two parts (hamstrings/gluteus and quads/calves). A good rule of thumb is never lift more than two consecutive days in a row, allowing your body to rest between muscle groups. Your rest days are when your body repairs the damaged muscle you broke down during your lift.
Another key to successful weight training sessions is to log your workouts. Buy a small log/journal at your local bookstore, and write down your workouts before you hit the gym. This allows you to stay on track and track your progress as you work toward reaching your lifting goals. I like to map out my weekly routines on Sunday night; this holds me accountable throughout my busy week.
Lastly, in order to see the benefits of a solid training program, you must supplement and feed those muscles. To gear up for a solid training day I use MHP’s X-Fit Trainer as my pre-workout drink and am sure to refuel with MHP’s Probolic SR protein shake. I eat between 6-7 high protein meals per day along with clean carbohydrates (oats, sweet potatoes, brown rice, quinoa). Solid nutrition and supplementation will help fuel your body for the intensity of a training program and will allow for faster recovery.
If you’re new to the world of weights I highly recommend browsing the pages of Muscle & Fitness Hers for exercise ideas to incorporate into your routine as well as recipes to help fuel your activity level. Bottom line, don’t be afraid to get in the gym and pump some iron! You won’t get big or bulky, but you will create more muscle that adds shape to your body and increases your metabolism. With so many benefits to a solid weight training program why wouldn’t you give it a try—I’m willing to bet you’ll fall in love like it did!