So you’ve been eating healthy and doing cardio exercise for months and months. You’ve successfully lost weight, but you wonder why you’re just a skinnier version of your former overweight self. While good eating habits and aerobic exercise are an important part of optimum health, there’s no better way for a woman to transform her body than through strength training. Besides being the quickest and most effective way to reshape your body, strength training offers many other benefits, making it key to overall health and fitness.
Why strength training works
The basic way strength training works in toning and sculpting a woman’s body is that strength training causes change in the body by overloading your muscles and stimulating muscle growth, which then forces your muscles to respond and develop. Regular and consistent strength training will increase muscle mass. Increased muscle mass doesn’t mean that a woman’s body will bulk up, which is a very popular myth among women. What it does mean is that your body requires more energy to maintain this new muscle, burning more calories throughout the day, even while at rest. What it also means is since muscle takes up less space than fat, you will have a more toned physique. A good example of this is if you replace the fat on your upper arms with muscle, your upper arms will get much smaller.
Other benefits of strength training
In addition to reshaping your body, the other benefits of strength training are:
- Reduces body fat
- Develops strong bones, thereby reducing the risk of osteoporosis
- Helps combat cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure
- Increases energy levels
- Helps the body fight stress
- Improves mood and overall sense of well-being
- Helps promote a better night’s sleep
- Increases stamina
- Helps to prevent injury
- Improves balance and flexibility
How Much Strength Training is Enough
By strength training for as little as 30 minutes every other day, you will start feeling and seeing the benefits in just a few short weeks.
Strength training provides many benefits that cardio exercise and diet alone cannot provide. Whether reshaping your body is your goal or an optimal state of health and fitness is what you are striving for, strength training should be a part of your weekly workout regimen to ensure a complete fitness package. As always, check with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program.