Women who are looking to lose weight often have to wade through a lot of misinformation: television ads, websites, etc. This can be confusing and make it difficult to understand exactly what it takes to lose fat, get lean, and transform your body. Hopefully this article will help to dispel a few common myths that women believe when it comes to nutrition, exercise and weight loss. Read this carefully and don’t believe some of the hype you run across. Here are a few fitness myths that female trainees may believe.
- Resistance training will make you look big and masculine.
This has been disproven time and again, but there are still women who believe that lifting weights will make them look like a 250 lb. (male) bodybuilder. Perhaps this belief is prevalent because of overly muscular female bodybuilders. Anyway, a female is very unlikely to get “huge” from resistance training due to simple biology. Women simply don’t have the same physiological and hormonal makeup as men, so their potential for building large muscles just isn’t the same. Less testosterone and more estrogen mean less muscle.
What about those huge, manly-looking women you see in magazines? Chances are they have been using anabolic steroids. That’s why the look masculine–they have been injecting synthetic male hormones into their bodies.
But a typical female will look great after doing weight training for a few months. The fitness and bikini models you see got that way by lifting weights as their primary strategy.
- Doing Aerobics is the Best Way to Lose Fat
Years ago we learned that fat is burned in an aerobic environment. But this led to the belief that low-intensity cardiovascular/aerobic exercise is the best way to lose weight. This simply isn’t true. Aerobic exercise is a good way to burn calories and it is good for overall health. But the problem is this kind of exercise just isn’t a very efficient way to burn calories.
This is why I’d recommend women use weight lifting as their main strategy for transformation. Resistance training creates a greater metabolic impact than low intensity aerobics. It also preserves lean (muscle) tissue, which is great for your metabolism.
You can add cardiovascular training to your routine, but your first priority should be to get in the weight room.
- Abdominal Exercise is the Key to a Flat Stomach
Some believe that the key to getting a flat stomach is crunches and sit-ups. Training the abdominal and core muscles is important since these muscles are involved in almost every move we make. But the key to a flat stomach (or six-pack abs) is having low body fat. Abdominal training simply doesn’t burn that many calories because the muscles are relatively small. If you want a flat stomach you have to watch your diet and do exercises that use big muscles (and burn more calories).
- Fat Burning Supplements are Important for Weight Loss
Women are bombarded by advertisements for so-called “fat burning” supplements, some of which claim to be specifically designed for females. But most of these pills are little more than caffeine tablets. Caffeine suppresses appetite, helps mobilize fat stores, and combats fatigue while training. But there’s no need to buy some exotic supplement when you’d probably get the same effect from taking a generic caffeine tablet (or even a cup of coffee). Diet and training are the keys–not supplements.
Hopefully this article has helped clear up some misunderstandings. I’d highly recommend you invest in something like the Bikini Body Workouts Program (by Jen Ferruggia) if you’d like a complete guide for women who want to lose fat and get in better shape.