October 9, 2015

Weights, Women, and Why

I was packing my stuff up in the locker room the other day getting ready to leave. I over heard a lady talking about how she could never do any type of weight lifting because of how intimidated she feels on the gym floor, and classes were her “thing” because she could just go in, not think, and get her workout in. Now I realize that everyone has different interest in terms of fitness whether it be biking, running, lifting, or dancing. I say go for it! Find something that you love and DO IT! But you know what is concerning, is NOT doing something because your too intimidated to try it. After the hearing the lady in the locker room talk about her insecurities about the weight room floor, it made me reflect on my own insecurities in the past.

Actually I think this is very common for women to be intimidated by weight lifting, and I’ve heard that a lot. I have been really into fitness for several years, and honestly there was a point where I was very intimidated to even go in the weight room. The last time I had actively lifted weights was way back in high school. Now two kids later, well, you get the idea…it’s been a while. Currently I’ve been weight lifting seriously for a little under 2 years. So I’m still a newbie. Before that I was a class junkie and a cardio queen. I ONLY did classes (zumba, dance jam, barbell, total conditioning, strictly strength, cycling) you name it…I did it. But at a certain point I just was ready to try something new. And honestly it was one of the best thing I’ve ever done. I discovered and learned so many things over the last several years.

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1. Strength is powerful, and power equals confidence.

There is something so empowering about lifting heavy weight, and feeling strong. Seeing the strength that your body is capable of and seeing the physical changes that happen is amazing. As woman I think that subconsciously we are taught that we are the “weaker” sex. Weight lifting breaks those barriers and gives woman a power and confidence that can’t be bought.

 2. Understanding how to change my body for any goal.

By getting involved with the culture of weightlifting, I’ve learned how to alter and manipulate my body to meet any goal using food and exercise. Whether I’m building muscle, losing fat, or maintaining, each goal requires a different approach. I am a big believer in learning and empowering myself through knowledge in the science of it all. And knowledge is power. Knowledge allows me to have a personal control in deciding what is best for my body.

3. Focusing on what my body can do, and not what it looks like.

Going into a workout and feeling accomplished with the amount of weight I’ve lifted, number of reps you did, or maybe even a personal record for the day…that’s what’s important. It has given me a focus on personal strength and improvement, and not how I look or how skinny I am.

4. Hard work equals results.

Weight lifting is hard work, and building muscle is even harder. I know that any amount of muscle I do gain is literally blood, sweat, and tears…and there is a pride in that that no one can ever take away. You can’t hide dedication. If you want a good physique and strength, you have to work for it everyday, plain and simple. The only way to get results is by hard freaking work.

5. Learn by doing.

When I started I had no idea what I was doing, and honestly there are days I still feel like that because truthfully I am still learning. And the more I learn, the more I realize I don’t know. The thing is, no one really knows everything. Get in there, try it, and see how it goes. The more you do something the easier it gets. If you have a question…ASK! So many people are willing to help. No one is judging you because they are too worried about their own stuff.

 6. Best things are outside of our comfort zone.

Weight lifting was something I never thought would be a part of my life. It was a risk for me.What if I looked stupid, or did something wrong?”Well sometimes risks are worth taking, and I’ve learned that if it scares you the rewards are much greater. It is one of the most empowering things that I’ve ever become a part of. It was one of the best risks I’ve taken. I’ve met lifelong friends, developed a sense of self, and really grew into who I am as a woman.

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