21 POWER Reasons Why Women Should Lift Heavy Weights (Looking Bulky Is A Myth)

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One of the biggest misconceptions among most women who are looking to lose weight and get in shape is that they should NOT lift weights. They claim that by lifting weights they’ll end up looking too muscular and bulky like men.

Oh I don’t want to look too muscular, I just want to look toned, and lifting weights will make me look muscular..” they say!

That is the furthest thing from the truth!

In fact, it is a downright lie.

…. And for those women, their idea of getting fit and toned is to head to the gym and find an available cardio machine, spend 30 minutes to an hour and repeat the cycle day after day hoping to get that hourglass figure.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that. To shape your body, you need to lift weights.

Heavy Weights!

So if you are one of those women that think the weights are going to destroy your femininity, please stick around for a little while.


Today I am going to debunk the myth that women should not lift weights.

I am also going to share why EVERY woman should incorporate weight lifting in their workout programs regardless of their fitness goals.

Drink 2 Teaspoons Of This

So please just be open-minded for a few minutes. Because as you’ll soon learn, the weights will be your best friend!

I promise.

Before I get into the details though, I want to ask you a question that should have you thinking a little and maybe give you some insights and change your perspective about lifting weights – that is, if you are one of those ladies that think weight lifting for women is a bad thing.

So here goings:

Which Image Below Would You Rather Look Like?

weight lifting -for women

Right Or Left?

I am pretty sure you’d agree with me that the image on the right above is quite impressive compared to the one on the left.

Which woman wouldn’t want some nice round and firm bums?

The truth is, without proper weight lifting routines for women it is near impossible to have a nice and firm bum especially if your genetics is not on your side. However, with a good weight training program, you can definitely get not just a tight and firm bum but also that sexy stunning body that you’ve always craved.

But Isn’t Cardio Supposed To Burn Fat While Lifting Weights Build Muscles?

Cardio VS Weight Lifting

Firstly, I am not here to bash cardio.

Cardio is VERY important and should also have its place in every fitness program. There are many benefits to doing cardio but I’ll save that for another post.

Today I want to focus on weight lifting for women.

And Let’s be honest, doing cardio can be very BORING!

What’s even worse is that it seems as if there are 100 seconds in a minute when you are on the cardio machine.

You jump on the machine, you start pushing and going hard and you feel great like you are accomplishing your goal. You think you’ve done about 15 minutes already only to look down at the timer and realize it’s only been 3 minutes and you have 27 more to go.


Wouldn’t you rather spend your time doing something more fun while still getting a good bang for your buck?

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Both Cardio And Lifting Weight Will Burn Fat If Your Diet Allows It!

When it comes to burning fat, the most important factor is your diet.

You need to create a calorie deficit in order to burn fat. You can do that either by eating less or by exercising (Cardio and/or Weight Training) or both (Diet and exerciseRECOMMENDED).

However, if you want to look absolutely sexy and STUNNING, then you must incorporate weight training into your fitness program.

The reality is that doing cardio surely will help you lose weight but it will not shape your muscles to give you that hourglass figure. You’ll only be a smaller version of your current self and you won’t have that sexy toned look.

In fact, if you only do cardio you’ll waste away your muscles (if you don’t use them you lose them) which could slow down your metabolism and plateau your journey real quick.

But here’s something very important to think about:

It doesn’t matter how much cardio or even weight training you do, as long as you eat in a surplus you’ll NOT burn fat. But here’s the kicker: if you do cardio alone and eat in a surplus, the excess calories will be converted to fat and stored.

Ever seen some folks at the gym for months doing cardio every day but look the same way?

That’s the reason. Their diet is not dialed in.

On the other hand, however, if you eat in a surplus while following a weight lifting program for women, you won’t put on a lot of fat because you’ll also be adding MUSCLES.

And the good thing about muscles is that it’s a lot denser than fat.

So even though you’ll be gaining weight, if you are doing the right weight lifting exercises for women then you may even look smaller. Because you have the capabilities of adding weight to the right places – AKA your bum 🙂

Have I convinced you that you need to start a weight lifting program for women yet?

If not, let’s look at some of the amazing benefits to start ditching your favorite cardio machine and start picking up some dumbbells.

Carly Down 4 Dress Suzes

21 Reasons Every Woman Should Start Lifting Heavy Weights

Why Women Should Lift

1. After-Burn Effect = More Calories Burned

Do you know what amazes me?

How some women (and men too) are so caught up with the number of calories they burn on the treadmill or their favorite cardio machine. They’ll wear their Fitbit or polar watches and crank up the level on the machine so that they can set records and break them ever so often.

That’s all well and good but there’s a problem.

After that treadmill run, that’s it for the calorie burn. If you pushed and burn to say 500 calories in a workout, a few minutes later when your heart rate goes back to normal there will be no after-burn effect.

On the other hand, there are several studies that have confirmed that your metabolic rate increases up to 36 hours post weight training workout. This means that even after you are done working out, you’ll still have an after-burn effect. Which means you are still burning fat long after you are done working out.

With cardio, your metabolic rate basically returns to normal after a few hours.

Verdict: It’s no question that both cardio and weight training burn calories. However, if your goal is fat loss then you should give priority to weight training because of the after-burn effect that will have your metabolic rate elevated up to 36 hours post-workout while cardio will not.

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2. Burn More Fat When Compared To Cardio

It’s one thing to burn calories but it’s another thing to BURN FAT.

Your sole objective when losing weight is to ensure that you are burning fat. When you incorporate a weight lifting program it ensures that you maintain your muscle mass and keep your metabolic rate elevated. In doing so, it ensures that the weight lost comes from fat and not your muscle tissues.

In fact, in a recent study done by Tufts University on two groups of overweight women: One group performed a weight lifting routine twice per week while the other group (the control) only dieted.

When the results were in, the group that lifted heavy weights lost an average of 14.6 pounds of fat and even gained 1.4 pounds of muscle. On the other hand, the group that did no weight training gained no muscles and only lost 9.2 pounds of fat.

Verdict: So the writing is on the wall – it is clear that weight lifting for women trumps cardio when fat loss is the goal!


3. You’ll Maintain Or Increase Your Muscle Mass

The rate at which you burn fat is dependent on your metabolic rate.

… And guess what?

The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolic rate will be even while resting. The problem, however, is that research shows that the average woman’s metabolic rate, or the number of calories burned in a day, decreases by 1 percent each year after the age of 30.

As a result, your resting metabolic rate is lower and your body will require fewer calories per day to carry out biochemical functions.

This simply means that as the years go by, you lose more muscle mass and gain even more fat, especially around your problem areas even if your food intake remains the same.

So what’s the best way to maintain or increase your muscle mass to keep your metabolic rate elevated?

Weight Training!

When you lift weights, you put stress on your muscles which causes microscopic tears in them. That’s the reason why after a weight training workout you’ll feel a little sore.

However, once you keep your diet intact, you’ll build your muscles up to keep up with the demands of your workouts.

Verdict: If you stick to cardio alone, you’ll waste away your muscles. The concept is that if you don’t use them, you’ll lose them. However, by doing weight training, you are able to maintain or even increase your muscle mass to keep your metabolism elevated so that you are more primed to burn fat.


4. You’ll Boost Your Metabolism

As you should know by now, the more muscle mass you have, the faster your metabolism will be. This inevitably means that the less muscle mass you have, the slower your metabolism will be.

A slow metabolism equates to less burning of fat.

And as I mentioned in point #3 above, as women age they lose a percentage of their muscle mass naturally every year. Weight training and proper dieting is the only way to reduce the rate at which you lose muscle.

Verdict: The next time you head to the gym, head to the weights section instead of the treadmill because doing ‘only’ cardio will waste away your muscles faster and slow down your metabolism. Weight training has the opposite effect.


5. You’ll Increase Your Strength And Feel Amazing

Just the feeling of knowing you don’t have to depend on a man to carry things for you is empowering.

When you lift weights, you’ll increase muscle mass which equates to more strength. This makes everyday tasks a whole lot easier. You’ll be able to carry your groceries, move around furniture in your house, lift your own suitcase off the carousel at the airport and, a whole lot more.

And the confidence boost is a plus!

Verdict: Lifting weights will increase your muscle mass and make you stronger. This will give you independence knowing you don’t have to depend on others (a.k.a men) to do things for you.


6. You’ll Spend Less Time At The Gym

Let’s be honest, there are only 24 hours in a day and I am pretty sure you’d rather be doing something fun and enjoyable than spending hours in the gym – right?

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the gym. It’s like my safe haven. But, I don’t want to be there all day especially when I have a lot of important tasks to get done.

The good news is that because of the after-burn effect and the long-term weight loss benefits, you can spend less time in the gym and get amazing results than you would with cardio.

So instead of doing one hour of cardio, you can weight train for 30-45 minutes and get better results. Sweet right?

Verdict: Time is a luxury that once passes we can NEVER get back. If fat loss is your goal, weight training will give you a better bang for your buck in the gym in less time when compared to cardio.


7. You Will NOT Get Big And Bulky

The main reason why most women don’t get involved in a weight lifting program is that they think that they will get big and bulky.

Let’s dispel that myth once and for all.

In order to get big and bulky – like men, you’ll need a LOT of testosterone.  Naturally women don’t produce enough testosterone to build muscles like men. 

Plus you’ll also need to eat a lot of food (calorie surplus) to build up your muscles. This is the opposite of what you’ll be doing because you’ll be eating in a deficit to burn fat.

In fact, to look bulky like some bodybuilders, it would take years of dedicated training and dieting.

So don’t be afraid to pick up the weights at your gym. By the way, I am not talking about those little 2lbs dumbbells either. You need to pick up HEAVY weights!

Verdict: Don’t be afraid to pick up heavy weights in the gym. The idea of women getting bulky from weight training routines is a total myth. You naturally don’t produce the amount of testosterone required to build up your muscles to ‘get bulky’.


8. You Can Build And Enhance Your Curves

  • Want to have some nice round and firm bums?
  • Want to have some well-toned legs?
  • Want arms that don’t giggle?

There’s nothing better to build up your glutes (your bum) than doing some heavy squats and hip thrust. You also need to lift weights to tone your arms and legs. And as mentioned earlier, muscle is a lot denser than fat and thus takes up less space.

Plus when you have a great diet plan and follow an effective weight lifting for women program, you trade fat for muscle. This means you drop the belly bulge making your waist smaller while firming up your shoulders and arms and your bum.

This will give you the hourglass figure – that sexy look that so many women crave. Even if you don’t naturally have a curvaceous body, you can target certain areas and build them up revealing curves you never thought was possible for you.

Verdict: The point is, doing cardio can help you lose weight – but it will just be a smaller version of your current self. Even worse, because you’ll lose a lot of muscle mass if you do cardio alone, your body fat percentage will still be relatively high giving a ‘skinny fat‘ look.

You definitely do NOT want that. So don’t be afraid to get under that squat rank and lift some heavyweights. Your body will thank you for it.


9. You’ll Become Better At Running

If you are a cardio queen then you’ll love this benefit of weight training for women. You don’t have to be a professional sports person to reap the benefits of going hard on the weights.

Consistent weight training will strengthen your muscles, giving you stronger arms, legs, and core. This means improved performance, better running form, and overall athleticism.

Plus studies show that strength training increases the number and size of calorie-torching muscle fibers.

Verdict: If you love running, you should start weight training already. By strengthening your legs, arms, and core, the next time you go for a run, you’ll be burning more calories than you would without a strength training program.


10. You’ll Empower Yourself And Boost Your Self Confidence

There’s another muscle that most people don’t know about, it’s the ‘confidence muscle‘.

Well, the main reason why most people don’t know about it is because I made it up! All jokes aside though, the more you lift and get better at doing it, the more you build your confidence muscle – you BOOST your Self Confidence.

So when you walk into the gym or anywhere for that matter, you own the place and command respect.

When others see you (men and women alike) picking up some heavy weights, they have to stop and stare. But not in an intimidating kinda way.  More like damn that girl is AMAZING. 

I also find that this confidence boost also extends to all other aspects of your life.

  • Have a job interview – check!
  • Going on a date – Check!

It doesn’t matter, by constantly challenging yourself to do things in the gym that you never thought possible, your confidence grows both inside and out.

Verdict: The point is, by following a workout plan for women that incorporates heavy weight lifting, you become empowered.


11. You Get To Indulge In A Little More Carbs

It seems like everywhere you turn for weight loss advice, people are cheering on a ‘low carb diet‘.

It’s true, dropping your carbs can help you lose weight fast. But… if you are lifting heavy in the gym, you get to eat a whole lot more carbs without putting on weight.

In fact, when you lift, you need those carbs for energy so that your workouts don’t suffer. Those carbs will help you build nice lean muscles and NOT fat.

Keep in mind that you have to choose your carbs wisely though. I am not suggesting you go and eat donuts and not expect to have repercussions. As I mentioned at the start of the article, your diet is key to achieving your fitness goals so you still need to choose your meals wisely.

Verdict: The great thing about lifting heavy weights is that you get to consume a lot more carbs without worrying about putting on fat. Your body will use those carbs for energy to boost your workouts so you can build some nice lean muscles which in turn will boost your metabolism taking you one step closer to your weight loss goal.


12. Weight Training Strengthen Your Bones

There are many research studies that show that women are at a higher risk of getting osteoporosis than men. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation osteoporosis affects more than 10 million Americans of which 80% are women.

This is a disease in which the bones become brittle and fragile and are more susceptible to being broken or a fracture.

One of the main cause for this disease is due to physical inactivity or lack of ‘load-bearing exercises‘.  Studies also show that the lack of physical activity can also lead to a decrease in bone density. However, weight training a.k.a lifting heaving weights will provide mechanical stimuli which help to improve bone health.

Verdict: Lifting weights engage your muscles that also pull on the tendons which then pull on the bones. Doing this consistently helps to make the bones stronger.


13. Feel More Energetic Throughout The Entire Day

There are two things I don’t like about doing long boring cardio:

  • 1. After a long cardio session, you get so hungry you could eat an entire cow.

This is also one of the reasons why a lot of women fail to reach their weight loss goals as well. They do long hours of cardio and feel that they can ‘treat‘ themselves to a nice meal afterward which usually void all the calories burned in the session.

2. After a long session, you are tired and drained and just want to roll over in bed and sleep

Weight training on the other hand boosts your energy levels and mood throughout the entire day. Studies show that lifting heavy weights boosts serotonin levels in the brain. This is a feel-good hormone that is responsible for your mood. The higher the levels, the happier and more positive you’ll be.

Verdict: Want to feel happier, upbeat and energetic throughout the entire day? Trying to lift some weights for your workout session in the AM.


14. Your Heart Will Thank You For It

The amount of women that die from cardiovascular disease each year is alarming. In fact, the Center For Disease Control And Prevention reports that heart disease is the #1 cause of death for women over 25.

But what you may not know is that doing weight training actually helps to improve your heart health. Lifting weights increases your “good” (HDL) cholesterol and decreases your “bad” (LDL) cholesterol. It also lowers your blood pressure.

Verdict: In an article by the Journal of the American Medical Association it was reported that persons who weight train for just 30 minutes a week lower their risk of heart disease by 23% when compared to persons who don’t lift. Astonishing isn’t it?


15. You’ll Drop A Size Or Two Real Fast

Most women are so caught up with the number on the scale. This is why they like to do tons of cardio in the first place. It’s like a never-ending cycle. They do cardio to burn a lot of calories on the machine in hopes that the number on the scale will go down.

But did you know that you can drop a size or two without the number on the scale going down?

As I mentioned earlier, muscle is a lot denser than fat. In fact, two women could weigh the same amount and look completely different. Remember the image I showed you at the start of this post? Scroll up and look again.

You see, when you do weight training and build up your assets, you get to tighten and firm up some areas for example your waistline. However, because you’ve lost fat and are gaining muscle the scale won’t go down but you’ll look a whole lot better and fit in that dress size you’ve always wanted.

Verdict: When you first start resistance training you’ll be gaining muscles while losing fat. Depending on the rate at which you gain muscles and lose fat, it may take a while for the numbers on the scale to go down but because muscle is a lot denser than fat, you’ll still be losing inches from various parts of your body giving you a smaller and more toned look.


16. Weight Training Improves Brain Health

Weight training is not just for your muscles. It helps to improve your brain health as well. When you weight train, there are certain amount of endorphins that are released which helps to combat depression and anxiety.

For example, a 2012 Mayo Clinic study shows that consistent weight training also helps to combat memory loss in older women.

Verdict: This is a good reason to start picking up some iron.


17. It Also Improves Your libido

Okay, so we already know that estrogen is the primary sex hormone that females produce. But did you know that a little boost in testosterone can actually improve your sex drive?

Here’s the thing, women do produce testosterone. But before you start thinking about that ‘being bulky‘ scenario that we’ve already thrown out the door, just know that the amount of testosterone that women produce is just about 5% of what men produce.

So there’s no way in the world that amount will bulk you up. Neither will you start growing hair like men. So you can breathe a sigh of relief :).

However, by doing a bit of weight training, you can boost your T level just a tiny bit which can have a MAJOR boost on your libido levels and keep you in an upbeat mood.

Verdict: Doing weight training is a great way to enhance your libido which can have a positive impact on your relationship with your partner. Wink Wink!


18. Weight Training Will Also Improve Your Quality Of Sleep

There are so many things that can keep us awake at night. The bills to be paid, what’s for breakfast the next morning, problems at work, the kids… you name it.

But the great news is that according to a study done by the Journal Of Sports Medicine and Science, resistance training done over a period of time will significantly improve your sleep quality.

Verdict: Sleeping is when your body gets to rejuvenate and repair itself. When you toss and turn all night, you find that you are very tired the next day. Doing some weight training will significantly improve your sleep quality over time.


19. Live Happier And Reduce Stress

Ever heard of ‘cortisol‘?

It is the main stress hormone. Whenever you are feeling down or depressed, chances are your cortisol levels are way too high. We all have our worries and problems to deal with and sometimes they get the better of us.

The good news though is that studies have confirmed that consistent resistance training (at least 3 times per week) can drop your cortisol levels by as much as 18%. This is probably one of the main reasons why many persons find the gym as a safe haven. You get to take out all your problems on the iron and go home feeling De-stressed.

Do you still think weight lifting for women is a bad thing? Give it a shot and I am pretty sure you won’t be disappointed!

Verdict: Weight training is proven to decrease cortisol levels. On the other hand, cardio has the opposite effect. So if you want to get fit and live closer to a stress-free life, weight training is your better friend.


20. Reduce The Risk of Diabetes Or Improve Your Quality Of Life If You Already Have It

One of the best ways to increase insulin sensitivity is by doing weight training.

What this means is that your body will be better able to process sugar which can reduce your risk of getting diabetes. On the other hand, if you already have diabetes, by being consistent with your weight lifting efforts, you can improve your blood sugar control.

In fact, in a study done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it was shown that persons who are consistent with weight training over a 16 weeks period can improve glucose metabolism in a way that is comparable to taking diabetes medication.

Verdict: The more lean muscle mass you have, the more efficient your body will be at eliminating glucose from your bloodstream.


21. Improve Balance And Flexibility & Overall Performance

If you thought yoga was the only way to improve your balance and boost your flexibility then you are wrong.

According to top Researchers from the University of North Dakota, when you perform resistance training using the full range of motion for the various exercises, you can improve your flexibility just the same.

This is because weight training improves your fast-twitch muscle fibers (cardio uses mostly your slow-twitch muscle fibers). As a result, your overall performance also gets better. For instance, your running, swimming, or just about any activity that you love to do will get better.


There are a lot of women that are shying away from the weights section at the gym. This is mainly because they have the wrong information about weight lifting for women. You see, there’s a saying that “knowledge is power” but I believe that it is actually in the use of knowledge the real power is.

The reason I said that is because now you have not 1, not 2, not even 3 but rather 21 reasons why you should start picking up the weights in your gym.

The writing is on the wall and it is safe to say: Women Should Lift Weights

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