Weight and Resistance Training - I'm probably gonna get some "dislikes" for this, lol...




mimsyborogoves
05-25-2012, 02:24 AM
But I hate weight-lifting. I don't get the same high like I do from the elliptical or other forms of cardio; every time I do it I feel like it's a chore and I feel like everyone on the gym is staring at me and it makes me uncomfortable, and on top of it, I never know what is the right weight to choose. One weight feels too easy, the next one up is too hard, and it just ends up being a confusing, painful mess and I never end up with a good workout -- I mostly either slave through it or give up.

However, I know that in order to keep my muscles in check and to try to salvage my skin as much as possible, I need to do some sort of strength/resistance training. I can't for the life of me find something that I like to do, though. What are some alternatives to weight lifting that have the same effect but are more fun?


seagirl
05-25-2012, 08:04 AM
Push ups, planks, pull ups, yoga classes with lots of sun salutations and arm poses - anything that uses your body weight.

MablesGirl
05-25-2012, 08:04 AM
Does you gym have any classes such as body pump? You use lighter weight and more reps, but it is to music with other people, but they are not watching you, they are focusing on themselves. You also might want to invest in a session or two with a trainer to have them show you the proper technique. Great job on the weight loss!


sontaikle
05-25-2012, 08:16 AM
FWIW, I HATED weight training when I first started. I tried it in high school and said "forget this" and didn't try again until I was almost done with college. Now I love it more than cardio!

What helped me was taking a weight training class and learning the right way to do the exercises. Like others said: see if there are classes or if you can learn the proper technique from a trainer. You might be doing things wrong or maybe just starting out with wrong weight.

And trust me, people aren't looking at you :) They're too focused on what they're doing to care what others are.

berryblondeboys
05-25-2012, 08:22 AM
I'm with you and hating strength training when I'm solo. I do NOT like exercising by myself - period.

I know there's all sort of stuff about doing lighter weights with more reps isn't as effective as higher weights with less reps, but bodypump is kind of inbetween and I've gotten pretty darn strong doing it and since it's a class, I enjoy it - a lot.

I haven't been able to go for about a month first because of a shoulder injury and then switching to major gardening, but I miss it!!!! And will be back at it soon!

nelie
05-25-2012, 08:33 AM
Weight lifting isn't just 'lifting weights', well ok maybe it is. But there are lots of things you can do. Power yoga is a great alternative and one thing I'm starting to get into.

I also love kettlebells and do kettlebell workouts.

I also recently bought a book called the You are your own gym (body weight book), it is kind of quirky and I haven't finished looking through it but it is giving me some ideas for tweaking my workout.

Aclai4067
05-25-2012, 10:21 AM
I second the suggestion of taking a body pump (or similar) class if your at a gym. I'm really bad about skipping the weights (especially arms). When I go to the class, I feel like a have to finish. No skipping out early after 20 bicep reps and calling that "arms."

reanbean
05-25-2012, 11:12 AM
But I hate weight-lifting. I don't get the same high like I do from the elliptical or other forms of cardio; every time I do it I feel like it's a chore and I feel like everyone on the gym is staring at me and it makes me uncomfortable

To channel my girly side, TOTALLY!
I definitely felt/feel the same way. However, once you start getting better, you will get an even bigger confidence boost knowing you can lift heavier than the week (or two weeks) before! I usually go much earlier in the morning when most of the meat heads are still slobbering on their pillows, and the cardio slaves are minding their own business. :p

I would encourage you to find motivation to lift weights. So many women skip this, unaware that WEIGHT LOSS IS PROPELLED by lifting weight. However, if you need to start off with other types of exercises to gain strength before you have enough confidence to "hang with the boys," that's perfectly fine.

Eventually, you'll be able to lift heavy enough for the guys not to judge you because you just picked up 5 lb dumbbells (speaking from experience), but for now, who cares! Just focus on this: what you do today will make you stronger and leaner tomorrow! :)

I never know what is the right weight to choose. One weight feels too easy, the next one up is too hard, and it just ends up being a confusing, painful mess

You might be doing too many reps.

When you're ready to start a weight lifting program, stick for a range of 8-12 reps per exercise. If you cannot do 8 reps, you are lifting too heavy. If you can do more than 12 reps, you're lifting too light. This rep range is perfect to assess how heavy you should be lifting. You should be able to barely squeeze out your last rep with great effort. When you do this, you will build muscle (but remember-- you won't become a beast lifting this way-- WOMEN DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH TESTOSTERONE FOR THAT).

Also, plan out what you'll do ahead of time. You may need to consult someone that you know who is into weight lifting, otherwise, it will take a little more effort, and extra time to plan out your workouts.

You should be recording how much you can lift on each set, and then seeing gains next week (or the following week. This allows you to judge if you're making any progress, or just lifting weights to maintain muscle).

I do this split:
MON: Chest & Triceps (could switch biceps & triceps days around)
TUE: Back & Biceps
WED: Legs & Calves
THURS: Abs & Shoulders

When you're ready to weight train, you can take advice from an expert on strength training on bodybuilding.com, and the site also has pictures and videos of each exercise, and how to perform them with perfect form.

I've been using Jamie Eason's 12-week program (I prefer to be told what to do), and there are many more experts on the site with programs and advice that love sharing their secrets of success with us novices! :)

trust me, women should be weight lifting, we just need to walk into the "He-man woman haters club," and show them we want to see results too! :P

WHAT MODERATE WEIGHT LIFTING, EATING CLEAN, AND LIGHT CARDIO CAN DO FOR US WOMEN (Jamie Eason when she's not preparing for a fitness competition, and lifting moderately):
http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSOO5yl4PzF_Odfk3-DnQC4gZkB6CN6JmQBVt0Cl2HApaA0e2027A

reanbean
05-25-2012, 11:20 AM
And yes, sontaikle is right. 95% of people are NOT looking at you, they are so focused on what they're doing. The other 5% are like, DAMN! A chick is here... SWEET! The psychological feeling that people are judging you is internal.

That will dissipate after you build confidence in your abilities.

GOOD LUCK CHICA!!

pnkrckpixikat
05-26-2012, 08:09 PM
I would think that rock climbing would be a really good muscle workout for the arms and legs and perhaps core... maybe see if there are any rock wall places near you

fromthebox
05-31-2012, 12:11 PM
And yes, sontaikle is right. 95% of people are NOT looking at you, they are so focused on what they're doing. The other 5% are like, DAMN! A chick is here... SWEET! The psychological feeling that people are judging you is internal.

That will dissipate after you build confidence in your abilities.

GOOD LUCK CHICA!!

I want to second this. The people in the weight room at my gym are either so focused on themselves they don't see you, or as reanbean says they're like "DAMN that chick is lifting?" I took a course at my local CC and someone recognized me from the gym. I was like really? And these big college football guys were all "Yeah, not that many chicks lift... whats your bench up to these days?" It was awesome.

snaggly
05-31-2012, 12:35 PM
Okaaayyy, just putting my feelings out here on weight lifting.

I have been observing many women in my gym who have been weight lifting. Why do I know they're lifting? Because of their body proportion, broad shoulders and very obvious muscles.

My conclusion is that the ONLY women who will look good in MY eyes as a woman are those who are of the slender body type, you know, the ectomorphs, I think, they're called. Otherwise, all the other ordinary women simply look very bulky.

I'm not an ectomorph nor am i able to be so disciplined to keep my BF% in my low teens so I've deliberately stopped my lifting with weights and focused on cardio instead. The only things I do with weights are in classes eg, MXT classes once a week. Other than that, it's all mostly strength training using only body weight during a cardio session, eg, in a Les Mills session such as bodyattack.

Again, this is my opinion and of course, those women wouldn't be fussed. For you, OP, you should try either bodypump or getting a personal trainer to show you the techniques, as others have suggested. Think about what you personally want with your body and go from there.

reanbean
05-31-2012, 01:58 PM
I'd just like to say that Sheldon's 'somatotypes' that you refer to (ectomorph, edomorph etc.) is a THEORY developed in the 1940's by a silly man, in order to associate body types with human temperament types. This theory is SERIOUSLY flawed, and existed in the times when we used to 'cure people' with electroshock therapy, and lobotomies. Why this sad excuse for typing people still exists is beyond me.

Furthermore, a good strength/muscle building regimen has TWO phases.
The first phase is meant to build strength and/or muscle while minimizing fat gain.
The second phase is meant for losing fat while maintaining strength and/or muscle mass.

SO IF YOU STOP LIFTING WEIGHTS, YOU WILL BURN LESS CALORIES, LOSE LESS WEIGHT, AND BECOME FRAIL AND UNHEALTHY!
Overweight persons are capable of achieving both goals (strength gains and fat loss) at the same time; however, they're the exception to the rule.

Don't base your exercise regimen on rusty theories based on no less than observations (that is, THIS THEORY IS NOT SCIENTIFICALLY BACKED).

I don't recommend that anyone take the somatotypes theory seriously, or advise people using this theory.

Originally Posted by snaggly
My conclusion is that the ONLY women who will look good in MY eyes as a woman are those who are of the slender body type, you know, the ectomorphs, I think, they're called. Otherwise, all the other ordinary women simply look very bulky.

And alas, this is one of the reasons that women hold unrealistic goals for their bodies, and have a low self esteem.

DietVet
05-31-2012, 02:35 PM
And alas, this is one of the reasons that women hold unrealistic goals for their bodies, and have a low self esteem.

Totally agree. I can't understand why anyone would aspire to a body so thin and flabby that it can't do anything AND which can exist only through chronic underfeeding. That ideal is a form of self-loathing, in my opinion. It rests on several forms of extreme self-denial.

What I love about weight lifting is that it gets me to focus on what my body CAN do rather than what it 'can't' or 'shouldn't' do, and it encourages me to think of myself as strong, independent, and powerful. It's self-affirming rather than self-denying. I love it.

sontaikle
05-31-2012, 03:13 PM
I'm not about to sit here and say what I find attractive or whatever, but WE NEED TO STOP CRITICIZING WOMEN'S BODIES. Whether they are skinny, thin, fat, muscular, WHATEVER. It doesn't matter what YOU personally find attractive nor does it matter what the majority of men find attractive. Every woman deserves to feel good about her body.

You don't know what kind of women are reading what you're writing. This is supposed to be a supportive place and there are people here who are looking to be supported. They should not have to come on here and see: "I think this is unattractive."

Personally I'm a confident person and IDGAF what other people think of my body. Rewind back to when I was in high school and if I read some of the things here I might have been discouraged or turned off of weight training. I've come a long way but others are still working on their journey to self acceptance.



What I love about weight lifting is that it gets me to focus on what my body CAN do rather than what it 'can't' or 'shouldn't' do, and it encourages me to think of myself as strong, independent, and powerful. It's self-affirming rather than self-denying. I love it.


This so hard. Weight training has done so much more than make me look awesome—I feel awesome. I am confident, I am powerful, I am STRONG. It doesn't matter if someone insults me because I am a strong, powerful woman who can do these awesome things. When I meet people, talk to people, etc. I ooze confidence because of what I can do.

I certainly fail at times, but when I fall I get right back up sprinting.

fromthebox
05-31-2012, 03:18 PM
Okaaayyy, just putting my feelings out here on weight lifting.

I have been observing many women in my gym who have been weight lifting. Why do I know they're lifting? Because of their body proportion, broad shoulders and very obvious muscles.

So you didn't see them lifting, you just assume that's why they have those traits?


My conclusion is that the ONLY women who will look good in MY eyes as a woman are those who are of the slender body type, you know, the ectomorphs, I think, they're called. Otherwise, all the other ordinary women simply look very bulky.

You need a larger sample size than the handpicked one you are working from.
I am an endomorph, always have been. Here's what I looked like about 10lbs into my weight loss:
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y62/Clawskull/IMG_0665-1.jpg

and here's what I look like now:
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y62/Clawskull/bikini.jpg

not so "bulky" unless I'm flexing to look buff:
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y62/Clawskull/320e64b6.jpg


I'm not an ectomorph nor am i able to be so disciplined to keep my BF% in my low teens so I've deliberately stopped my lifting with weights and focused on cardio instead. The only things I do with weights are in classes eg, MXT classes once a week. Other than that, it's all mostly strength training using only body weight during a cardio session, eg, in a Les Mills session such as bodyattack.

I am nowhere near disciplined enough to get my BF below 20%. It's probably 24-26% right now and getting any lower is really hard for me. From what you're saying, you seem to be against strength-only training. Bodyweight strength training, circuit strength and alternating days of cardio and strength are all more common than straight strength training in women. Unless you asked these ripped women and know they did it all through lifting alone you are assuming that that is why they look the way they do.


Again, this is my opinion and of course, those women wouldn't be fussed. For you, OP, you should try either bodypump or getting a personal trainer to show you the techniques, as others have suggested. Think about what you personally want with your body and go from there.

This last advice is very pertinent to the OP and all of us. Set personal goals- I will never look like ScarJo or Angie or any other hollywood body. What I want is to look good and feel good as me. A personal trainer is always a good (albeit expensive) option. Bodypump is good for some but hard for others who can't fit the class into a rigid schedule or don't like groups.

My point here is that weight training isn't about pumping it up and getting big for women. It's about bone health, strength, increasing endurance in your cardio and (sometimes) looking good nekkid. You have to try really hard to get bulky. Maybe the women at your gym do try that hard. For the rest of us, we all need to let go of the myth of bulk and embrace the good aspects of lifting.

snaggly
05-31-2012, 05:19 PM
Let's put it this way, there is no "right" or "wrong" view here, is there?

It really depends on what each of us personally want or what we are happy with, not what some other person think we should be happy with.

IMO, you CAN increase endurance (which is really through cardio, not lifting heavy) and increase strength without using actual weights (eg, through rock climbing, as someone suggested, and other forms of body weight exercises).

IMO also, a bulky, muscular woman does not look good naked but that's not to say that I admire the thin waifs on runways. Each to their own, really.

sontaikle
05-31-2012, 05:43 PM
I don't really see the point in posting what you find attractive or not attractive though. Why does that even matter?

The point is that exercise is good for you. Weight training is good for you. Cardio is good for you. Doing both is good for women.

It's incredibly hard for women to get bulky lifting weights unless they truly want to. Even then, why is that an argument against lifting weights? Isn't health better than just "looking attractive?"

sumire
05-31-2012, 09:26 PM
I know I'm just jumping on a bandwagon at this point, but (and I'm aiming this at a general audience, not you personally, snaggly) aesthetics are one thing; long-term health is another.

I feel really strongly about this because of my mother. She is in her mid-60s and is slim (having lost about 40 pounds that had crept on over the years, about 2 decades ago). She does cardio, but no weights-- did some pink-dumbbell stuff in her younger years, but not in a long time. She is now so weak that she carries in her groceries one bag at a time, and she can barely lift my 25-pound nephew into a high chair. I can hardly believe how little strength she has. I don't want to end up that way.

Brandis
05-31-2012, 11:14 PM
I think I love strength training because of that- it gives me strength. I like being able to feel really strong. It makes me feel independent, and confident. If I ever get to what I want to look like, it will include a fair amount of muscle. And I won't give a crap about what anyone thinks about it. But even though I am not at goal weight, I realize since I got my butt back to the gym that I jiggle a lot less. Even though my body fat is still too high. And I would certainly rather be fat and firmer than fat and wiggly jiggly. So, with that being said, I would say just keep going (with instruction if need be) and I think you might be surprised by the results. And nobody mentioned bones! Strength training is good for the bones, and the healthier our bones are, the less likely we are to suffer osteoporosis. Just keep trying.

nelie
06-01-2012, 07:03 AM
A lot of women don't realize that fat can exist between muscles so often 'bulk' is fat between the muscles, not the muscles themselves. Continued exercise and dieting can reduce that fat. Also muscle is so easy to lose that if you think you are too muscular, it is an easy fix. Unless you are near goal weight, you probably wouldn't even know though if you have more muscle than you'd like.

Also, I've been close to 400 lbs, I'll never look good naked. That isn't my goal. My goal is to be fit, live longer and do things I like.

RandomPaige
06-12-2012, 07:05 AM
BTW, I think you ladies look phenomenal, and you should be proud of your hard work and achievements.

I have been observing many women in my gym who have been weight lifting. Why do I know they're lifting? Because of their body proportion, broad shoulders and very obvious muscles.

Yes, they're muscles. We all (men and women) have them.

For a female, I naturally have broad shoulders. Nothing short of reconstructive surgery will ever change that. I won't say that's going to prevent me from beginning to lift as I can't change the shape of my shoulders, that's in my genes. However, I'd rather not look like a flying squirrel if the wind catches me either. I am not concerned about how "attractive" someone else finds me, because I want to find myself strong and attractive, everyone else can avert their eyes like they did when I was at my heaviest for all I care.

No, there may not be a "wrong" or a "right" opinion here, but there is a level of support and respect for others. I think everyone would like to maintain that. Not to speak for anyone else, I think it's understood that in entering a thread and voicing an opinion, not every will agree.

I can say the best dessert in the world is Lemon Meringue pie, everyone else may disagree :D As I used to tell my ex: "you have the right to be as wrong as you like, I think its wrong for you to tell me what is right."

krampus
06-12-2012, 11:20 AM
What are some alternatives to weight lifting that have the same effect but are more fun?

Rock climbing, carrying heavy things, hauling sandbags (not so fun IMO), picking up wiggly children and large pets, yoga, pushups (there's an app for that), planks...lots of things.

However I have to say, weightlifting doesn't have to be a long and arduous chore. It almost feels like a shortcut! I lift for like 20 minutes 2 days a week, sloppily rushing through a short circuit, and it's been doing a huge amount of good and I feel like I am functionally stronger than when I wasn't lifting. This to me is way better than counting seconds on a yoga mat (I am super ADD), and has allowed me to eat more and lose a ton of inches around my middle and generally become more "attractive" by every possible standard (barring fat admirers).

Function and strength for daily living are obviously important...but everyone wants to be attractive too, and for probably half of dieters being attractive = top priority. My boyfriend was all "derrrr don't get huge" when I told him I was starting a lifting regimen, but he soon realized that it was just making me all-over more lean/strong/HAPPY and now he thinks my weightlifting calluses and biceps are hot, which is cool.

collingwood
06-12-2012, 05:10 PM
One of the reasons I decided I needed to do something about my weight was when I tried to do some exercises and really found it hard doing push ups.

A great option for me was wall push ups and you can pretty much do them anywhere at any time. I'll do them against the kitchen bench, in a lift, against the car...etc and I've found them to be great. I have noticed more flexibility and strength.
Here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4HnT3YgOKcQ) is an example.

Also you could have some dumbbells around where you watch tv and just grab them and do some different workouts with them while watching tv.