How to exercise like a girl;
Step One: Be a girl
Step Two: Exercise
All too often I see stories of women saying they don't feel like they can go in the free weights areas of gyms because they;
* Feel intimidated
* Have experienced an unwarranted opinion that they 'shouldn't be lifting weights that heavy'
*Think that free weights room are ONLY for men and women should stick to cardio
* Will be laughed at for doing an exercise wrong
Being a personal trainer and having known these feelings all too well - whether they where physical experiences, or my thoughts getting the better of me - make me passionate to help anyone, but in particular females feel so confident in the gym, that they can venture into any room or area and perform all exercises regardless of gender!
There are so many benefits to exercises that are so often thought of as a mans exercise; like bench press for example - an amazing exercise for toning the chest and if you are flat chested like myself, you can grow yourself a little cleavage! Huzzah!
Any time we don't know what we are doing, or feel less confident can lead the feeling of intimidation. For example starting a new job, moving to a new area, joining a new gym or even changing up your current training routine in the gym you've been at for years.
Add some toned bodies into the mix and it can make you feel all kinds of intimidated. With a little time and patience, you'll become more familiar with the people around you, or the exercises you're doing and you'll soon look back and joke about how worried you were when you first started.
With unlimited access to information online, people will watch a few videos online of someone working out and think they know it all. They may even be ballsy enough to tell you how to train, whether you asked for their input or not!
But unless they are an employee of the gym or actually have a personal training qualification, they may not be giving you the best advice, despite how confidently they say it and how good their intentions may be.
If a trainer politely offers you some advice, firstly you have the right to decline, or accept it, they may have noticed you making a common mistake, or that something you're doing could lead to injury (E.g. a 100kg deadlift with a back so round it could be mistake for a U-bend! Yep I have seen it!). Ultimately the offer of help will be so that you can make the most out of your training, not just an ego trip from the strongest guy in there.
FUN FACT: Did you know if you put your knees down during a press up you will grow ovaries.....
Oh, you didn't know that? ...Well no, you wouldn't, because there's nothing 'girlie' about a push-up on the knees, you're either strong enough to perform a full push-up or you're working on it, simple!
Now I understand where this stereotype comes from, naturally males tend to have more upper body strength, females usually find they carry more strength in the lower body allowing us to child bear. What this means is that males, often (but not always) are able to do full push-ups, while females tend to find them more challenging, which is why there are some variations such as kneeling push-ups, to help you build up strength and work on your form.
This leads me onto an age old myth that you need to do loads of cardio to lose weight, tone up and weights will turn you into a bulky man (see our related blog 'Why we love lifting weights' to read more on how beneficial women and weight training really is!).
1) It won't
2) Cardio is hardio
3) See above ^^^
Sorry back to the point... Cardio is great to work your heart and lungs, but will only help you lose weight while you are in a caloric deficit. If you want to shape and tone your body, strength and resistance training is required.
If you've recently joined a gym and want to get into strength training to help you no matter what your goals, don't be afraid to ask a trainer for help, for most of us it's our career which we are passionate about and are more than happy to help.
If you want to learn a lot of exercises it may be worth considering one to one sessions, so you get the full assistance you need.
Octavia Active is designed to to allow you unlimited movement, whilst being squat proof, sweat proof and fuss free meaning you can get the most out of your workout and look great too!
If you'd like to see our full range head to the website SHOW ME MORE
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