Morning Cup of Vomiting in My Mou…….Wait a Second, This Isn’t Half Bad
Either the apocalypse has hit, or someone’s playing a really, really late April Fools joke, because if I read THIS article correctly, someone in the mainstream media is actually telling women to put down those pink dumbbells and lift heavy stuff.
From the NY Times:
For people who lift weights to tone up and slim down, experts say, a regimen that includes a combination of challenging weights and fewer repetitions can help significantly. In a 2002 study, for example, scientists looked at what happened when women performed various resistance exercises at different weights and repetitions (85 percent of their maximum ability for 8 reps, versus 45 percent for 15). Subjects lifting more weight fewer times burned more energy and had a greater metabolic boost after exercise.
I could nitpick here and say that there really is no such thing as “toning;” only being less fat – but whatever. The fact that a mainstream newspaper printed this and not only went against the grain, but actually got it right – and in the process, not make me want to swallow my own tongue – speaks volumes. Seriously, I honestly thought I’d see a unicorn fly out of Tracy Anderson’s ass before I read an article in the NY Times telling women that lifting heavy things is not only good for them, but yields superior results.
Of course, and this goes without saying (but I’m going to say it anyways), I’ve been espousing the benefits of women lifting heavier weight for ummmm, ever. I mean think about it. The amount of effort/muscle (or lack thereof) that it takes to lift a weight 20 times, is so insignificant compared to the amount of effort/muscle it takes to lift a weight eight times. What makes muscle, KEEPS muscle. Moreover, muscle is what gives the body shape, contour, and firmness. It’s no coincidence that many women (not all) who focus more on the high(er) rep side of things tend to look flat, weak, frail and could pass for an emaciated runway model.
An extreme example for sure, but you get the idea.
Concurrently, there are a lot of wonen who are still looking to lose that extra 20 lbs of fat they gained from their first preganancy – FIVE years ago – and are still adament that high reps are where it’s at. As a result, despite the countless hours in the gym, counting reps and plugging away on their elliptical trainer, all they have to show for it is what we in the fitness industry call the “skinny-fat” look. Skinny, yes. But still far from the “toned” look that many aspire for.
As a result, many will begrudgingly add more reps; when in fact all they need to do is, you know, actually do some work!
As I’ve stated in the past, I write roughly 80% of the female programs at CP. As such, when many first start, they’re surprised at the lack of volume I give them. As an example, here’s a sample day from a recent program I wrote for a new female client:
A1. Trap Bar Deadlift 4×6
A2. Split Stance Adductor Mobilizations (x8/leg), Behind-the-Neck Pullaparts (x10) – alternate between sets
B1. Push-Ups – elevated on pins 3×8
B2. Seated Cable Row – Neutral Grip 3×10
C1. DB Reverse Lunge 3×8/leg
C2. Pallof Press ISO Holds 3x3x10s/side
D. Finisher: Goblet Squats (x10), Med Ball Floor Stomps (x10) – 5 rounds, 60s rest
E. Go eat some dead animal flesh
As someone who’s always been a runner, and never really bought into the weight training stuff, she LOVED her first session. What’s more, after two weeks, she’s already noticed a huge difference in how she feels, not to mention is starting to come around and understand that it’s actually alright to increase the weight on the bar.
Nevertheless, it’s refreshing to finally see someone in the mainstream media telling it like it is. I think someone just got a little verklempt. Someone = me.