Weight Training: Just Do It

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Bonsoir, Mes Amis

I should probably be going to bed, well, 40 minutes ago, but my eyes aren’t quite ready to shut down for the night, so here I am. My body, on the other hand, is pretty darn exhausted. I went rock climbing this evening with Max – I hadn’t gone since Saturday, and whenever I take a larger gap the first day back is always a little rough. Entirely worth it, though 😉

Which sorta, kinda leads me into the point of this post. As you probably now, I work out. I rock climb as often as humanely possible, but I also weight train at my fitness gym roughly two times a week. Yes, I said weight train.

For some reason, people tend to have this silly idea that weight training can make women look like female mega-bulky buff machines. I’ll let you in on a little secret: I pretty much exclusively weight train and I am definitely not buff . Am I strong? You bet. Do I have muscles? Mmmhm. However, I do not look remotely buff. I look toned, thanks to weight training.

Too many individuals are under the impression that cardio is the way to slim down and look like models. News flash: there is this thing called photo shop, cardio only works a portion of your muscles, and to achieve even that you need to rotate machines frequently, and also, those models don’t eat. Like, at all. I eat whatever the hell I want when I want, and I’m pretty content with myself. Granted, I eat healthy things, but my food is delicious. Boo-yah! In my opinion, cardio is pedestrian, so I only use it for a warm-up, or if I’m feeling less enthused I will pop a squat on the stationary bike and read a book (two birds, one stone). That being said, it does have its place in the world; it’s just not the way to achieve results.

Okay, I’m getting a little off topic here. Back to selling you on resistance training. First of all, what is resistance training?

It is an activity that involved some form of resistance against a muscle contraction.

You can use many types of equipment for resistance/weight training, such as free weights, weight machines, cable machines, rubber resistance bands, or even the weight of your own body, as well as gravity.
I would recommend incorporating all of the above mentioned into your workout, for they all have their own unique benefits. For instance, machines allow you to slowly add weight, free weights help with stability, cable machines allow you to move in several different planes of motion, which can activate certain stabilizing muscles as well as core strength, and resistance bands are said to aid your central nervous system.

Now, let’s look into some of the benefits associated with this glorious thing known as weight training.

  1. Via weight training, you buildup body strength as a whole as well as core stability. This leads to a healthy spine (shoulders back, head up, chest out!) and a body that won’t behave in a dysfunctional manner.
  2. When you build muscle mass, you are promoting healthy and strong bones. Ladies over the age of 40 who are at risk for osteoporosis: this applies to you.
  3. Resistance training increases your anaerobic power, which is highly beneficial if you are an athlete, either competitively or in a recreational sense.
  4. Working out with weights works your brain! It makes your brain healthier and helps it function at a higher level, as well as increasing coordination and alertness; and who doesn’t love that.
  5. Your flexibility will also increase (believe me; I used to be atrocious in the flexibility department, and weight training has worked wonders), which leads to healthier muscles and a better range of motion. Please make sure you stretch regularly though, and preferably when your muscles are already a little bit warmed up.
  6. Lifting weights helps with a multitude of changes in body composition, such as decreasing body fat percentage and increasing lean muscle mass. What does this mean? You will be looking fabulous.
  7. Finally, overall you will just feel better! Working out releases serotonin, the happiness neurotransmitter, and you can’t hate that.

… Thus ends my spiel on why you should weight train. If anyone has any specific questions (or if you want me to woop yah into shape at the gym), don’t hesitate. For now though, I must be hitting the hay. Au revoir!

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About azuremarie

Bonjour, I'm Azure; a healthy dose of eccentricity best taken with a grain of salt. Most people describe me as sassy, and I like that. I love words, and think that anyone who can twist them in their mouth and make something beautiful come out is sexy and someone with whom I want to spend my time. I read a lot (bordering on too much), and am baller at boggle. I happen to be addicted to concerts/live music, and will listen to anything that can carry a beat, and even those that don't. I believe that being normal is boring, and love bright colors. I have a soft spot for animals, particularly dogs and horses, but I am beginning to be a cat person as well. Sometimes, I will admit that I like some animals better than some people - they're great listeners and don't judge. J'adore voyager. Someday I want to be able to look at a map of the world and say "I have been there, there, and there... and there", and have a memory attached to them all. I've recently begun to work at an organic juice bar, and diet/holistic health is starting to become a main passion of mine. I want to be able to experience our world, as well as help save it. Oh, and unicorns exist.

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