By the healthiergang writer , fitness instructor and Powerlifting expert.
Women In The Gym
This article is dedicated to the fair sex, because it must be recognized, unfortunately, that most of the women are afraid of the practice of training with overloads (weights, exercises where you lift your body weight and more).
The biggest fear about it is that their body could turn like Bill Bixby's into the "Incredible Hulk", but in reality training with overloads does not even turn men into the Hulk, let alone women, who produce from 10 to 20 times less testosterone man.
In fact, testosterone is the main cause of the increase in lean muscle mass as it is a direct stimulator of protein synthesis. On the other hand, women who have muscle masses and somatic features similar to those of men, make use of drugs for muscle growth, among which there is also testosterone.
A woman who does not take these substances, by training in a serious way with weights and other exercises that overload the muscle fibers, can never reach too imposing muscle masses, but on the contrary she will get a toned and dry appearance, as long as he maintains an adequate caloric intake to maintain his body weight, or if he has to lose a few pounds, keep it slightly below the daily requirement.
There are numerous nutrition articles on this blog that can provide you with very good advice regarding the right diet to follow. The only real negative transformation that the body of a woman can undergo (as indeed happens to a man), is that of gain weight over the years, without even realizing it, finding himself, after the age of thirty, 15-30 kilos overweight.
Another transformation that takes place over the years, above all for those who carry out office work, it is the hyper-kyphotic posture at the dorsal level, which compromises both the general state of health and the physical appearance, since consequently, the whole trunk takes precedence by flattening the buttocks and relaxing the abdomen and eliminating any trait of femininity .
If then the two problems described are associated, we find ourselves some forty years old who physically is as if they were eighty. If you recognize yourself in this description that I have made, or perhaps even if you do not have these problems, you are interested in improving your body both from the point of view of health and from the aesthetic point of view, you should continue reading.
No to Group Aerobics courses
The fear of gaining muscle mass, becoming like Ms Olympia seen by chance on youtube, keeps women out of the weight room. For this reason there are the aerobic rooms of all the "commercial" gyms that are teeming with women of all ages, in the utopian quest to obtain the much hoped for, but above all misunderstood (this due to many incompetent and ignorant instructors) "muscle toning ".
As if lifting small 1 kg weights, 2 kg rods, anklets full of sand, gymnastic bands that offer the same resistance as those they use to tie their hair and go up and down from a step of 20 centimeters, within a few months , can make them like the fitness model who advertises the thermogenic of the moment. In reality apart from the first two weeks of adapting to a physical activity never done before, with a positive response in terms of feeling of well-being, these courses do not offer any results.
Indeed in many cases they generate serious injuries, as they are performed in a highly frenetic way, many exercises that require excellent technique such as squats, lunges, step-ups, pushups (most of the trainees try at least to position themselves for pushups. , but the rest is all relative) and various types of abdominal exercises, such as lifts of the lower limbs from the supine position, which do nothing but place excessive tension on the iliopsoas muscle, generating excessive traction on the lumbar vertebrae.
To obtain a remarkably toned body with an optimal fat percentage, like that of the models who advertise supplements on the internet, however, it is not enough to attend aerobics classes, just as it is not enough to go "walking fast because fast walking allows you to oxidize fatter". To get that physique, you have to learn how to handle heavy loads in core exercises like squatting, deadlifts, bench press; this is as true for men as it is for women.
In addition, reaching levels of strength that allow you to lift your body weight is of fundamental importance, especially for women who always tend to load little weight in exercises with the barbell due to "laziness". By doing the pull-ups (although initially it will be necessary to use a rubber band to perform this exercise or to resort to performing only the negative portion after the positive portion has been performed with the aid of a jump), the horizontal tractions al trx, i pushups on the arms and dip, will not be able to find trivial excuses to reduce the load by 10 or 20 kg, but will be forced to lift all their body weight.
Another pair of exercises that help develop perfect physical shape is the high speed racing and jump vertically on a rise. I repeat the concept again, I do not mean the jog on the treadmill, the brisk walk uphill or the hops on the spot of the aerobics course, but the sprints on 60-200 meters and the jumps on boxes from 60-80 cm.
For all those who would object, I invite you to watch some women's athletics videos and observe the legs, buttocks, but also the lower limbs, back and chest of these athletes. I don't think fast walking enthusiasts have the same characteristics, because professional marathoners don't have them either. So in addition to doing squats, deadlifts, pull-ups and bench presses, women should also learn how to run efficiently and to be very fast.
To have objective parameters, a woman should be able to run i 100 meters in 15-20 seconds and be able to perform several jumps on a 60-80 cm box.
Rely on a Competent Instructor
Finding a trained technician is absolutely not easy, especially in those gyms that I previously defined as "commercial", because the type of work proposed by this category of instructors, in the field of programming for women, concerns only and exclusively the use of the classics machines for adductors, abductors and buttocks, such as the glutei-machine, which is the machine most used by women in the gym and at the same time the most useless, as the extensor muscles hip, which would be those involved when using this machine, are activated optimally only if the hip extension is carried out combined with plantar pressure, as occurs for example in the squat and deadlift.
In addition, they prescribe in these programs, a multitude of specific exercises with very low loads for the muscles of the upper body. Another mistake made by many instructors is to perform sets with low loads, selected without any logic, with the intent of losing fat and toning the muscles.
There is nothing more wrong because the programming for the woman, as it happens for that of the man, must be planned through exercises that provide percentages of load proportionate to the number of sets and repetitions provided. The most common mistake these instructors make, in fact, is to set up workloads based on "gym theories”, Such as the theory that for women to use dumbbells over ten kilograms in bench presses is too much and that if they use them they become too big.
This is pure ignorance, because there is no external load common, which can generate the same internal load for everyone. In less technical terms, a light load for one subject can be very heavy for another. The workloads must therefore be related to the physical abilities of the subject who is training and readjusted again whenever these abilities increase.
If there is no trained instructor in the gym where you train, and I assure you that to understand it, just analyze the program he provides you and compare it with what I wrote in this article or with other material about it, start reading up on blogs like this one. and view the video tutorials of the exercises that I highlighted in bold. Alternatively, change the gym.
Furthermore, if there is no space for running or jumping in the gym where you train, look for an athletics track nearby accessible to the public or a park, get yourself a wrist stopwatch and start testing your times on 60-100 and 200 meters and perform numerous series of jumps on a bench of at least 50 centimeters.
Program for the novice woman (healthy, normal weight or underweight)
Program for the novice woman (healthy, overweight)
Intermediate level women's program