I hear this just about every week from females:
“I lift weights for higher reps to tone”
“If I lift heavy weights, I will get too big”
“Doing squats will make my butt bigger”
And every week from the males:
“I just want definition and don’t want bulk”
“I need to use light weights and high reps to get cut”
As much as we try to educate, I still hear many of the same concerns as I did 20 years ago.
I think many of our current clients are better educated regarding strength training than most, but misinformation is everywhere.
Please understand these principles:
Lifting heavy weights does not guarantee bigger muscles.
High reps performed with lighter weights does not guarantee getting cut.
Muscle definition have more to do with diet than any exercise prescription.
Male or Female needs to really work hard just to gain even a little muscle.
The golden rule of skeletal muscle is this: having more of it is a bonus.
Skeletal muscle is metabolically active. Build it and it will burn more calories throughout the day.
Building and strengthening skeletal muscle fortifies the bones, ligaments, and tendons. This will minimize the risk of injury that can occur in sport competition, training, getting out of the car, or playing with your kids.
Skeletal muscles gives you shape, tone, and that fit look. Build muscle - lose fat- look great. You’ll have more self-confidence. You won’t be afraid to buy the clothes you’ve been wanting. Bottom line: skeletal muscle is sexier than fat. Do the math.
Want to do the “cardio” thing? It is skeletal muscle that moves the body.
Skeletal muscle helps you live longer. A study from Tufts University found the more muscle you have the better the chances of a longer life. More than either blood pressure or cholesterol, muscle was determined to be the top biomarker for longevity.
More muscle means more insulin receptor sites More insulin receptor sites means it’s easier for your body to minimize fat and stay lean.
Skeletal muscle can help improve posture. Having the strength to hold good posture can help other things, as well - it can help with chronic pain due to sciatic and other back ailments.
Skeletal muscle makes everyday activities easier. Becoming stronger and building muscle gives you a fighting chance each day when you must lift, bend, and stretch. Also, you are better able to fight fatigue with more stamina.
Combat sarcopenia by strength training. Sarcopenia is the age-related loss of muscle tissue. The harsh reality is we lose muscle mass as we age, up to 50% between ages 30-90. Additionally, menopausal women between 40-50 will lose 1% of their muscle mass each year, and replace it with fat. Not a desirable option.
There are way too many health problems associated with an overabundance of body fat. I can’t think of any when you have more skeletal muscle. The message is loud and clear: don’t be afraid to build skeletal muscle. Include strength training in your training program or workout regimen. And remember to work as hard as you can to stimulate those muscles to grow.