Ok, so you may have seen my previous post on our social media sites not so long ago, advising females to use more free weights. I said this because at the time I have some female friends, clients and people on my social networks asking how I can burn more body fat and tone my muscles. I always suggest using free weights as it will burn more body fat, yet, the response is always a look of terror. Most females unfortunately think that just because you lift weights, you are going to look like the next Arnold Schwarzenegger, or any other bodybuilder for that matter. This is not the case and this video will explain why.
Briefly, let's talk about the difference between lifting weights and cardio. Now, I see most females that come into the gym, or when it comes to exercise, most of the time you are going to be doing lots of cardiovascular exercise. You will use the treadmill for 10 minutes, then the X-Trainer for 10 minutes, you will add some cycling in there and maybe finish up with a load of abdominal exercises. Then you'll question why when you eat well, you aren't losing any body fat. Cardiovascular exercise is important, you will never hear me say it isn't and you should always do it. It is great for the heart, blood flow, the lungs and so on. You will lose weight by doing it, but most of the time, what you do there and then in that particular session is the total amount of body fat you will lose. (key point to remember)
What about weights? Well, when you lift free weights, (this includes dumbbells, barbells, machines) you are using more muscles to work the body. When you use more muscles to work the body you will burn more calories and guess what, if you are burning more calories you will LOSE MORE WEIGHT. Sound too good to be true? Well, look at it scientifically. Your metabolism relies upon how effectively your muscles work, if you have weak, untoned muscles, your metabolism could be slow and non responsive. If however your muscles are strong and toned, this will indeed mean your metabolism will work more effectively. Still not convinced? Ok, the main difference between you and I as a specie is this. Ladies, your main hormone within your body is called oestrogen. This hormone is in your body for different bodily functions. My main hormone within my body is testosterone. Testosterone is key when building muscles. Since you don't have much testosterone in your body (as mostly use oestrogen) you will find it very hard to build large muscles. I realise you might see different female bodybuilders with large muscles, but let me tell you, these ladies work extremely hard in and out of the gym and will no doubt supplement by taking testosterone.
So what exercises can you do to maybe tone your arms, bum, legs, stomach etc? Well I suggest you stick to compound movements. By this term I mean performing exercises that are going to work many muscles in one movement. Squats, lunges, rows, deadlifts are all great exercises that will burn lots of calories and tones your muscles. How many of you will go out running but then still notice that you maybe have flabby arms, 'bingo wings'?? Now it is important to know you can't spot reduce an area by performing a certain exercise. With this I mean, If you want to focus on one particular area of your body, lets take the stomach for instance, you cannot perform endless amounts of crunches to get a six pack or toned stomach. Why? Because you still have a layer of fat there that will cover it. Don't worry though, if you hit the free weights like I recommend then you will be burning calories and body fat so that when you do perform some abdominal exercises, you will be getting a toned stomach in no time.
Don't forget to have your whey protein once you have finished your session to maximise your results!
So my final advice to you is to include free weights into your workouts if you want to see a positive change in your physique. If you want more help on what exercises, rep ranges, sets to perform, feel free to get in touch with me.