When I first started lifting weights 9 years ago, I got all of my lifting tips and advice from men! Now being 5’2 and at the time 165 lbs, it probably wasn’t the smartest idea, but you live and you learn right?! Well after years of trying different things, I have been able to weed out a lot of the bro science and develop a set of tips to help women navigate the gym world!
#1) Gloves or no gloves? - When starting out, YES! One of the hardest parts about lifting weights is developing a good grip. While it will get better as you consistently start lifting more, in the beginning they will help you hold the bars easier.
#2) Chest Day - Do we really need it? - Yes! Although we don’t need to train chest as much as men train them, we need to incorporate some type of pectoral building exercises. Training chest helps prevent injuries when pushing or pulling, it helps balance out your posture, and eliminate that “boney” chest look. However the number one reason to train chest is to help balance out the weight distribution and increase your form for other exercises!
#3) Waist Trainers vs Sweat Belts - What’s the difference and are they needed?
Waist trainers/Corsets are a type of body shaping garment that temporarily manipulates muscle so that it has the appearance of being smaller. Bodybuilders and models utilize these garments to augment and alter their waist.
Sweat belts are flexible neoprene garments that wraps around your waist causing you to sweat more and helps eliminate water weight from your stomach and back.
Waist trainers should never be worn in the gym or when your body fat is higher than 20%. It will leave bruises and could possibly damage organs. Sweat belts are safe for cardio and sauna sessions but should not be worn while lifting weights, otherwise it can weaken your core muscles, which could lead to injury.
#4) Protein - Does it really make you big and bulky? - Nah! LOL Your muscles (no matter how big or small) are made up of protein! The more muscle your body has; the faster your metabolism; which means you’ll burn fat faster! Having muscle also helps when you are unable to train by keeping your metabolism fast so you don’t have to worry about skipping a day or 5 . Drinking protein shakes post workout will help your muscles recover faster, you will be less sore, and will be able to reach your recommended protein goal faster. You NEED protein! (but only 1 scoop is fine!)
#5) Coconut Oil - This is MY PERSONAL SECRET! It is not a industry known secret! SO as ladies who love to lift or will just start lifting , I know one of the turnoffs of lifting is having callused hands. Take it from someone who has been lifting for almost a decade, almost glove free, USE COCONUT OIL! After my shower, I lotion my entire body but for my hands, I’d rub a dab of coconut oil into my skin (and if you’ve seen any of my YOUTUBE videos, you know I lift heavy) yet I get tons of compliments on my very soft hands
I hope these FITT-Five tips help you on your journey!! If you have tips that can help someone, leave them in the comment section below!