WEIGHTS AND WOMEN
This article is in response to a readers question about program design and the female weightlifter.
I have heard so many women say that they do not weight train because they do not want to get big and bulky. This could be an insult to women in the pages of popular muscle magazines. The women who step on stage and compete have spent many long days over a number of years working incredibly hard to get the opportunity to walk across the stage. Working out a few days a week in a local fitness centre is not going to produce those results. So for all those ladies out there that fear they will become Amazon women, no need to worry, it will not happen. Remember, results are within your control, if you feel as though you are developing proportions you are not looking for stop working that area, or change your workouts. Muscle can grow and it can shrink, and it shrinks much faster than it grows.
I am also here to tell you that there is very little difference between men and women with respect to muscle gains and workouts. Any workout a man does the female can work in as long as they are at the same level with respect to training and experience. Women can increase their strength at the same rate as men. Some studies believe that female weight trained individuals can surpass men’s rate of improvement.
The main difference between the two sexes is chemical. Women have about 15 to 20 fold lower concentrations of testosterone than men. For this reason some have suggested that female athletes reduce their volume by 20% as compared to men at the same level. For the most part the absolute strength of men will be greater but women’s percentages will be the same or greater.
Women do not need different workouts than men. Any program that is suitable for a man is fine for a women. Female gymnasts can perform over 40 pull ups and female weightlifters can clean more than twice their body weight, why train them differently than men?
All the best in your weight training, powerlifting, and bodybuilding, programs.