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Apr 22, 2011

Workouts for Women

A woman's workout is very different from a man's. Women have different problem areas, different fitness goals and have to design their workout programs accordingly. Women don't respond the same way as men do to the weight lifting style men usually train by just due to the different make up of their bodies when it comes to body mass.
Men have on average a lot higher muscle mass percentage and a lower body fat percentage. Men also burn fat faster and gain muscle easier. Women on the other hand have higher body fat percentage that will keep a woman's body healthy while going through a pregnancy. A woman's ability to gain lean muscle mass is consequently much lower then a man's. Women also carry their body fat in different areas then men do and their workout has to be differently set up to target those areas more beneficially and to maximize the results. The hips, the thighs and the waist are usually the areas women need to focus a little bit more on then men. The number of repetitions in a woman's workout program differs based upon if she is working out to gain or to lose weight. If we were designing a female weight loss program, we would want to keep the repetitions high and the weight light to moderate. Light to moderate weight meaning heavy enough to feel some resistance but light enough to be able to keep a good full range of motion form, from repetition one all the way through number twenty. If you can make it through twenty repetitions and you are not even struggling, you could most likely go up one level in weights or dumbbells.
The high reps in each set will tone and firm the already existing muscles instead of building more muscle mass. The weight is kept fairly light to prevent any increase in size in the muscle. The more lean muscle mass you have the more body fat you will burn during the day and even while you are asleep. However, if you build up the muscle underneath the fat layer, the muscle will only push out the fat and make you look bigger instead of burning it off and make you lose in size and inches. This is the reason the repetitions need to be high enough not to build bigger muscles.
A very common mistake that women make is going to the gym and workout with their husband or boyfriend using the same workout program as they do. The women then get frustrated and upset that they don't see the results they want and they eventually drop out when all along they only had to change the program a little to fit their needs better.
We all know how different men and women are, physically and mentally. Therefore it doesn't make any sense at all for men and women to train according to the same training philosophy or principles. Our body makeup is different, our body mass composition is different, our muscles respond differently to the weight workout and men's and women's metabolism is usually very different.
To design a workout program that would fit women's needs, we need to look at the components that differ from a man's workout routine. The fitness goals of a man and a woman might also be completely different. While the man might want to gain some muscle and size, the woman perhaps want to lose weight and get definition instead.
It is basically impossible for two individuals with such different goals in mind to be able to follow the same workout program and both achieve their desired level of fitness.
Women also achieve better result by working their whole body each time they work out. It seems that a circuit training where you go through the whole body each time you train is perfect for women who wants to lose weight.
If a woman has a problem keeping the weight on instead, the workout program would look completely different. The weight she lifts would be heavier and the repetitions would be less, somewhere between 10-15 per set instead of 15-20. Trying to keep the weight on and build some muscle instead would require a split body part routine to be able to focus one hundred percent on each muscle group. Let's say you would train your legs on day one, rest on day two, train upper body on day three, rest on day four, train legs again on day five, rest on day six and train the rest of your upper body on day seven. Dividing the upper body muscle groups into two workouts is recommended because of the high volume a full upper body workout would include. It will basically be too long of a workout to go through all the exercises at once and you would most likely end up in a catabolic physical state instead of making any progress.
Another type of workouts that are great for women are all the sculpting and toning aerobics classes that most health clubs offer. The tempo is high enough to burn calories yet the second half of the class is usually focused on weight lifting and resistance training to tone and shape your muscles, a perfect combination for women of all ages. Last but not least, working out with weights is not only an important weight loss tool but also a bone loss preventive activity. The weight lifting in itself will help keep your bones strong and healthy as far as your bone density goes. The blood pressure stays low if your body is more fit and to keep your circulation healthy prevents blood clogs from forming. The health benefits from working out are so many and just the fact that weight training gives your body a natural stress relief due to all the happy hormones, the endorphins that your body is releasing while you are working out, makes it a powerful mental booster as well.

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