Friday, 27 March 2015

"Lifting makes women huge? FALSE, cupcakes make women huge!"

I gym like 3/4 times a week, sometimes more and when I'm there I lift weights. When I tell people this and when they see my protein shakers at home they 1. assume they belong to someone else? 2. tell me not to get "too bulky" or "too big" or 3. ask why I want to change my body when I'm not fat. These are literally the most annoying comments that can be said to a girl that gyms (and they always come from people that don't gym). 

The worst comment I've had is that "weights are for men". To know anything about fitness and the body is to know that women don't and can't look like men when they lift. Why? Because we don't produce nearly enough testosterone to look like a 'bulky male', it's because of the sciencey stuff basically. I assume the average person thinks this because the only thing they associate women and weights with is women that bodybuild. Yep their bodies look incredibly muscular and defined (especially if you're associating the fake tanned up to the eyeballs bikini comp pictures, where the whole point is to look as muscular and ripped as possible). But I can tell you now, bodies like that don't come from just 3/4 weight workouts a week. Hours upon hours of training, science, time, clean eating, more training and god knows what else go into achieving that kind of body and I applaud them for it. And to be fair, day to day the average person wouldn't even know whether a girl has just deadlifted 100kg and is rocking a steel set of abs, because funnily enough they don't walk to Tesco bikini clad. 

No matter how far you want to take your fitness levels, be it that you just want to shift a stone or two or you want to compete in bikini competitions, these are personal goals that are usually done for no one else except the person trying to achieve them and they should be encouraged, not ridiculed. If a girl wants to get as big and as huge as possible (which is HARD) let her. Don't tell her not to get "too bulky", she's not doing it for you or your approval, she's doing it for her. No one reminds you to not get "too big" when you've ordered your second dominoes of the week do they?

But the same goes for those who just want to shift a few pounds and nothing more. Even these people will find that there is so much stigma attached to 'dieting' and working out. People don't want to know what you've eaten or not eaten or what you've done at the gym in the past few days, and pull their faces when you say no to the biscuits that are being offered out. God forbid if you upload a gym selfie or instagram your meal prep. But it's ok for us to bombard facebook with our calorific desserts and alcohol fuelled weekends. Changing the way you eat and how you take care of your body is often a lifestyle change when it is taken seriously; it becomes a part of peoples lives. So why is a picture of chicken and broccoli so hard to stomach? Probably because people don't like what they don't understand and I know this because I too have been a diet and gym-goer hater before embracing it for myself.   

I'm not pretending I'm an expert in anatomy and I've got perfect form with every rep, because I don't. I'm still learning and so is everyone else, be it that you've worked out for years or started just last week. What I do know though is that working weights will leave you with the defined, shapely body you want, not 'bulk'. Prime example...shape to your butt? You need weights...ain't gunna happen in the cardio section. There are so many benefits to pumping the iron (I know, sorry) that once you realise them you'll never want to go back to that cross trainer ever again (maybe reluctantly on cardio days). With weights your metabolic rate increases, like, dramatically. Your body has to work harder to rebuild those muscles that have been broken down, burning energy and recruiting calories to do this even hours after you've left the gym. Ultimately strength training is an effective way of achieving fat loss and gaining muscle strength. And as long as you aren't pumping your body with testosterone and aren't consuming more calories than you burn, you won't get 'big', you'll get fit.

And as for me personally and why I want to do it, is purely enjoying it not enough? I LIKE going to the gym and I LIKE working out. I know I'm not fat but I don't need those who aren't happy with their bodies to tell me I should be happy with mine just because I weigh a few pounds less? I'm certainly not doing it because I think I'm fat, I have goals that I want to achieve in terms of what I look like, just as much as someone who is overweight might have. I want to be healthier, stronger, fitter, the best version of me and let's face it there is nothing quite like the buzz of finishing a top workout. It's addictive and when you start seeing results it becomes even more so. This post is merely just to try and dispel the female fitness myth, to remind the ill-informed to think before they speak and to say to females that are reading this, get lifting! You don't know what you're missing! 


  1. Nice post! A lot of the time it's lack of knowledge and stereotyping which causes people to frown at women who lift. Keep up the good work!

    Adam Grayston

  2. Agreed. I always lift weights because I'm a cheerleader so I'm used to lifting a 50kg human and throwing them around! Lifting weights burns so many more calories that cardio too and its annoying how many people don't know that! Great blog, I'm a new follower and look forward to reading more of your fitness posts <3

  3. I do the Les Mills body pump work outs, and I love 'em. I get so much more results than with cardio.


  4. wo…wooo.. I like it!! Your are so fit.. And sexy, I need a personal trainer like you..

    ALOKA UST-9130