Do you tend to ignore the whole weight-lifting-for-women-thing? Why? Are you afraid that you might bulk-up? Maybe you’re just using it as an excuse as I did. I’m ashamed to say that I was terrified of the pain involved! So there you have it, I’m a bit of a sissy.
However, I knew in the back of my mind that I should probably try and lift more than the 5 pound weight I have been lifting, oh so diligently (once a week), for the past ten years…hmmm…
I was inspired to do more through a friend’s blog. I’ve told you girls about her before, her name is Sandy Cooper and she wrote an excellent post on Friday about this very topic (must confess, I feel a little like a copycat:) You will find the post, 14 Reasons to Lift Weights on her blog, God Speaks Today, and it is just jam-packed with information about the benefits of training with weights. Please go check it out!
So, to get back to my point: About six months ago I was doing cardio consistently, but not so much anything beyond that. Then under the inspiration of Sandy I set out to read Body for Life by Bill Phillips. It’s a great book and gave me the push I needed to start pumping some iron myself.
I wrote an article Weight Training is for Women too back then when I just started and this is a quote from that article: “My posse of treadmill walkers looked at me funny. The men with the big arms looked at me with suspicion, but the few strong ladies around gave me “the nod”. You know which nod I’m talking about, the one that says: “You go girl!”
So where am I now with all of this?
Well, cardio, healthy eating and taking care of my spiritual and emotional well being helped me to loose weight in the past, but I have to say that my metabolism only picked up it’s pace the day I strapped on those funny gloves, loaded up those weights beyond a familiar number and surprised myself.
Did it hurt? You betcha!
Was it worth it? Seriously, it was worth all the sweat, pain and tears!
How do I know my metabolism is faster though?
Well, I can tell that things are working as they should again by the fact that I don’t immediately gain 5 pounds from eating 5 cookies. In fact even if I have a lousy day food wise, I don’t gain any weight (if I just get on track the next day of course). This was not true for me in the past. After years of starving, binging, purging and following all kinds of diets, my metabolism was sluggish, to say the least. It would take me months to shed only a few pounds, and then I could pick those few pounds up in a matter of days! It was so frustrating and discouraging.
Weight training also brought some other benefits to my life:
I have more energy and I discovered that my arms actually don’t have to wiggle and jiggle like they used to. Those jiggly arms used to be a great source of amusements and entertainment to the men in my life! However, this summer I’ve showed them:) I even ventured out and bought some T-shirts!
Seriously, the weight training also improved my endurance during cardio, playing with the kids and… well… lets just say it has benefit my marriage in unexpected ways:)
Something else I got from reading Body for Life: I was inspired to do cardio for 3 days a week and weight training for the other 3 days. This was huge for me! I was a sound believer in cardio 5 times a week (at least). However, it was really hard to stay consistent. It was just such a huge undertaking, hitting the treadmill 5 times a week!
So, taking a break and doing it every other day has been a big mental motivator. I do weights on my “tired” days, such as Mondays, and schedule cardio for the days that I’m bound to not be so exhausted. It has worked for six months now and it has made exercise so much easier and more enjoyable.
So I’m extending the challenge to you: How about giving it a try? Go get that book at the library, and go read Sandy’s blog. It will inspire you for sure and you might just be joining me in testifying about: “The wonder of having a metabolism that actually works again!”
If I could do it, I promise that you can do it too girl.
This was something way”unnatural” for me, but it gave me a huge shove towards victory.
Go pump some iron, baby!