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2 posts from May 2010


Women should lift weights

Why Women Should Lift Weights


Do you think lifting weights is just for men? Aren't you better off doing hours of aerobic exercise? Think again because women can gain significant benefits from weights training and it won’t make you bulky!

A lot of females go to the gym and use the aerobic machines to achieve the body shape and fitness they are seeking. This is fine, but a good fitness program for anyone - male or female - should have balance between all the training modalities. What a lot of women leave out is strength or weights training. We think this is a big mistake!

Weights womenNow you might think strength training is just for men, or maybe you're worried that you'll bulk up if you lift weights. But in reality strength training reduces body fat, increases lean muscle mass, gives you shape, increases tone and definition, provides numerous mental benefits, wards off osteoporosis, and even helps your body burn calories more efficiently. Wow, what a fantastic training tool!

You don't need to worry about bulking up - you'll actually look thinner because your muscles will be more toned. And increased lean muscle mass will provide you with a bigger "engine" to burn calories so even on days when you don't work out you'll be burning more energy! Females can definitely benefit from weights training.

Strength training will help you:

• Increase your strength and stability: strong muscles enhance your ability to move and lift things. Your aerobic workouts will be more effective because with extra strength you can work harder.

• Maintain and increase your bone mineral density: working your body with weights increases bone density and decreases your risk of osteoporosis. When bone is stressed appropriately through muscle movement, it gets stronger.

• Control body fat by boosting your metabolic rate: when you lose muscle, your body gradually becomes less efficient at burning calories. That's because muscle burns three times more calories than fat does. The more muscle mass your body has, the more efficiently and quickly it burns calories, even when you're at rest.

• Reduce your risk of injury: building muscle protects your joints from injury during aerobic exercise and in normal daily activities. Strength training also helps protect your lower back and keep it healthy.

• Improve your overall body image: studies suggest that women who strength train feel more self-confident and have an improved body image.

Still not convinced?! Consider the alternative - if you don't use your muscles, you lose your muscles. Your lean muscle mass diminishes with age, and your muscles will actually shrink if they're not used. This is especially important for older women and osteoporosis risk because resistance training decreases your risk of falls, increases your bone density, and increases your general strength and stability.

So how do you get started? Talk to one of our friendly ONE55 Personal Trainers today. There’s no time like the present!


Weight Training Tips

Guess what the No.1 Athletic activity in the World is? It’s Weight Training to build muscle and lose weight. Guess how many people perform weight training exercises correctly? Less than 10%.

More people are Weight Training today and reaching their muscle building and weight loss goals than ever before, and now is your turn. Don't let any more of your life pass you by without results!

Weight Training - The Proven Life Changer

Have you always been skinny, or always over-weight? Or maybe you just want to be firm and toned. Then weight training is the only solution.

Weight Training builds muscle, increases metabolism, burns fat  and is the basis of a strong, firm muscular body. Not to mention the health benefits.

Weight Training is a proven life changer. It simply adds Life to Life.

A Few Tips to Help You Get Weight Training Right

Strength Dose-Response Curve

Untrained participants (less than 1 year of consistent training) experience maximal strength gains with an average training intensity of 60% of their 1 RM (approximately 12 repetitions per set, to failure), training each muscle group 3 days per week. Trained participants experience maximal strength gains training each muscle group 2 days per week with an average training intensity of 80% of their 1 RM (approximately 8 repetitions per set, to failure). Four sets performed per muscle group elicited the most gains in both trained and untrained participants (interestingly though, only marginal benefits where observed between 2 and 4 sets per muscle group in trained individuals).

Exercise caution when considering multiple-sets per muscle group if you have not been training consistently for at least 1 year. Adequate time is required to become accustomed to the stress of resistance exercise and avoid over-stress injuries in the early phases of training. Novice trainees may also lack the desire to commit to a training program requiring the additional time needed to perform multiple sets and thus reduce adherence to the exercise regimen.

Braith RW, Graves JE, Pollock ML, Leggett SL, Carpenter DM, Colvin AB (1989). Comparison of 2 vs 3 days/week of variable resistance training during 10- and 18-week programs. Int J Sports Med. 10(6):450-4.

Rhea MR, Alvar BA, Burkett LN, Ball SD (2003). A meta-analysis to determine the dose response for strength development. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 35(3):456-64.


Suggested Repetition Ranges


Rep Range

Healthy participants under age 50-60


Pubescent children

Pre-pubescent children


Individuals older than age 50-60 or frail persons


Individuals primarily interested in muscular endurance

Cardiac patients with physician's approval

10-12 comfortably

Pregnant women without contraindications who have previously participated in weight training


ACSM's Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription, 7th Edition

ACSM's Resource Manual for Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription, 3rd Edition

Maintain Muscular Balance

When designing a program, select similar number of exercises and sets for opposing muscle groups. Some joints may become more susceptible to injury or altered posture when significantly greater training volume is preformed on one movement and not the opposite movement.

Symmetry Tip

When performing a unilateral exercise, begin with the weaker side first. Then complete only as many repetitions on the stronger side as performed on the weaker side.

ROM Criteria

Consider setting a range of motion (ROM) criteria on those exercises which have a peak tension curve (e.g. shrug, hip abduction, calf exercises, etc.). During a warm-up set with a light weight, take note of the angle or height the moving body segment or the position of the apparatus at full range. All subsequent workout repetitions should reach this benchmark without accelerating the weight through this harder portion of the exercise.

Starting Back After a Layoff

When starting back after a long layoff, it may be advisable to perform only one light set during the first workout(s). A warm-up and moderately intense workout set can be performed during subsequent workout(s). It will take longer to recuperate between workouts if you become too sore by performing too many sets and exercises. The body may adapt more efficiently with less chance of injury if the initial workout is brief and volume and intensity is increased systematically.

Monitor Muscle Gains

With an accurate body weight, a body composition test can measure both muscle mass and fat weight. Objectively monitor muscle mass gains every month. If muscle gains are not observed over time, exercise and dietary changes can be made in a timely manner.