When it comes to performing great at work, exercising is one of the solutions that people can do. Office work can just be too much for any individual which is why working out at home or in the gym actually helps improve your sleep and reduce stress so you're ready to get into another day in the office.
Over the years, women are becoming more comfortable with lifting weights as it not only helps them build muscle but it also makes them get stronger. Unsurprisingly, women still get remarks such as "You don't want to get man shoulders, do you?" This is why we have decided to debunk the most common myths about how weight lifting affects women's bodies this women's month.
Myth 1: Lifting weights will make you bulk up.
This is probably the most annoying myth about ladies who lift weights. So many people say that lifting weights will make women masculine looking. Therefore, some ladies think they would look "unattractive". This absurd misconception is definitely not true!
Yes, women who lift will increase their muscle mass; that's what strength training does, among other things. But it will not make women get a body like Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. They just don't have the level of testosterone that men have. An average woman will have around 15 to 20 times less testosterone when compared to a man, and when it comes to lifting, this makes a huge difference.
Myth 2: Women shouldn't lift heavy weights because it's dangerous
Let's put it out there; there is no such thing as "too weak to lift". There's also no "Women can't lift heavy". However, there are competitions like World's Strongest Woman and Women's Olympic Weightlifting. So if you are a woman and you want to lift, you can. Nuff said.
Myth 3: Women can't lose weight through lifting
Women can and will lose weight if they do lift. Why? Lifting weights will elevate your metabolism for longer when compared to cardio exercise. In a high intensity, heavyweights session, your body uses a large amount of muscle mass, which requires a lot of energy consumption to execute the workout and repair the muscle afterwards. When you lift weights, you burn fat and calories even at rest. Would you look at that?
Myth 4: You don't need to lift weights when you only want to "tone" specific muscles.
Toning will not happen if there are no muscles in the body. So the word "Tone" is actually misleading because it refers to the idea that you can achieve defined muscles by changing your shape without bulking up. In reality, you can't gain muscle definition without gaining muscle mass (or losing body fat).
Myth 5: It's scary or intimidating to learn weight lifting
If you are a woman who is just starting to work out, walking into a gym can be anxiety-provoking. You think you can't fit in, or the people there will judge you. Don't despair because men have this feeling as well - it's completely normal. The idea is to start with something small or lighter weights then work your way up there. The gym looks scary because you picture it out with lots of bulky men showing off their muscles and lifting the heaviest weights there is, when in fact, more than half of the gym consists of people who are trying to build a better body - just like you.
Myth 6: Lifting will make women infertile
You've probably heard it before "women shouldn't lift heavy if they want to have children". First of all, if you are a woman, your uterus will not fall out if you do strength training. That's absurd! Of course, we recommend that you talk to your doctor first to rule out any symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse to ease your worries. Lastly, research on strength training and women's fertility has not given conclusive or consistent findings. For example, some studies claim to have found a link between very strenuous exercise impeding fertility. Other studies have found a correlation between exercising of all types improving fertility!
Even though we've had some good laughs because of these myths, the bottom line is encountering them from time to time is just tiring. Here in Harmoni, we say that if you're a woman, why not just show them precisely what weight lifting can do for your physical and mental health? Don't let these weight lifting myths stop you from doing what you enjoy. If weight lifting or any form of exercise improves your endurance and helps you boost your energy to tackle many tasks at work, then by all means keep on going! You might even inspire a colleague or two to become your workout buddy!