Many myths surround the topic of female-specific training. In some cases, this misinformation can leave women on the outside of the health and fitness industry. However, women need to break down those physical and mental barriers regarding strength training. If you are ready to change your training mindset, here are a few tips for your workout routine.
Different Workouts for Different Bodies
Most training programs are designed for the male body. To make matters worse, some physical trainers believe that men and women should train in the same way. Women need to focus on different exercises to gain muscle, increase their fitness, and avoid any injuries.
If you want to gain strength and muscle, you will have to tailor your workout for the female physique. Women’s bone structure and hip angles are different from their male counterparts. Those jumps may be fine for a man, but a female is putting herself at risk for ACL injuries. Women have an increased posterior tibial and meniscal slope, and this type of exercise puts a strain on the knee joints. By adding lower squats to your workout, you will stabilize the knee area and help reduce the risk of injuries.
Most women have a higher percentage of type I muscle fibers compared to men with their high type II fibers. These type I fibers can benefit from higher reps during a workout session. This higher fiber mass may explain why women burn more fat during a workout and process blood glucose better than men. Women can increase their workouts with shorter rests and adding more volume to their exercise regimens. With these varied workouts, your body will burn more fat and tone up those muscles.
Since women have lower type II fibers, they often struggle in the gym with explosive movements. As a result of that, some females fail to complete all their reps or may perform lower-quality reps. The type II fibers control your explosive movements. In addition to the fibers, women have a smaller motor cortex that also controls physical actions. The good news is that you can increase these critical areas. You can always experiment with more power-based workouts. Think about doing reps at 50 percent power and 90 percent strength. You can even combine it with regular reps for a more beneficial workout.
Strength Training is Essential
Whether it is the media or your local gym’s layout, the idea of strength training can be intimidating. Many women skip this training because it is often seen as a male-orientated routine. Strength training is beneficial for all genders, and you should never feel afraid to pick up those weights. Make sure to press, lunge, carry, and squat to your heart’s content. If you are looking to lose weight and become stronger, you need to add strength training to your routine.
You might be tempted to head over to the machines to get in your strength training, but nothing can beat a free-weight workout. Like men, women also need heavy weights to gain muscle mass. Deadlifts are a great full-body workout for your body as it stimulates the muscles. You can really develop those obliques, abs, legs, and back. Not everyone loves squats, but you need them to strengthen the muscles in your thighs, butt, and legs. Dips can help to improve your upper body movement with a greater focus on the triceps and shoulders. Finally, lunges are another workout staple. These exercises target the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes. With this workout, you can finally tighten up your calves and rear to get those sexy curves.
Keep That Cardio in Check
For years, many people believe cardio was the only way to shed some extra pounds. By itself, cardio can hinder your physical goals. If you have noticed that your daily treadmill walks are not taking off the pounds, a cardio-only workout is the issue. A well-balanced program will include resistance and cardio training.
It might be time to think about High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). These training methods can help you gain strength and improve your health in a short amount of time. HIITs are great for women who may not have the time to spend hours in the gym. Like most exercises, you don’t want to limit yourself to only one workout. You should think about adding a combination of HIIT and steady cardio to your workout program.
Fuel Your Body with the Right Foods
A healthy diet is another essential step to keeping you in shape. The media often portrays a healthy diet as eating less to lose weight. While you need to eat less unhealthy stuff, you must make sure to add more of the right foods to your diet. As you workout, you need that fuel to power through your routine. Don’t ever starve yourself to lose weight.
So what should you eat? You have to watch the calories in your diet. If you consume too many calories, you will gain fat. On the other hand, women that severely limit calories will not gain any lean muscles. It is vital to keep track of your calorie intake. You need the right balance to lose weight and gain muscle. Water is essential to everyone’s health, and you should drink at least eight glasses per day. In addition to providing hydration, water can make you feel fuller without adding any extra calories. Protein is another essential for adding lean muscle to your body. When it is added to a healthy diet, you can reduce muscle loss after a workout and feel fuller during the day. Finally, choose fresh food over packaged meals. Those easy and convenient meals are loaded with sodium, high fructose corn syrup, and saturated fats.
Women need to move past those toxic mindsets that can hinder a workout. Don’t let some misguided information derail your physical fitness. You can help maintain a healthy lifestyle with these female-specific training tips.
If you are looking for more health and fitness tips, make sure to check out Gaspari’s Facebook page for updates.