10 Reasons Women Should Stay Away From Weights

You know how I feel about strength training…women should lift and they should lift heavy…no pink dumbbells!  So when I saw this last week I knew it would be something to share with all of you.  Hope you like it as much as I did.  This comes from a UK site called Gubernatrix, the Joy of Strength Training.  (Gubernatrix you say? I had to look it up too…”a female ruler.”  So much for my four years at the University of Michigan.)

10 Good Reasons Women Should Stay Away From Weights

1. You might break a nail.

2. You could even bruise a male ego or two.

3. You’ll eat properly and still be able to lose fat. Work of the devil!

4. You’ll look more like an athlete and less like a runway model. Skeletal is sexy, right?

5. You’ll be able to lift heavy things without asking a man for help, thus upsetting the balance of the universe.

6. You will be seen in public without high heels.

7. You’ll grunt, sweat and feel sore. So unladylike!

8. You’ll be proud of your pert bum instead of being self conscious about it like a normal woman.

9. You’ll be more active and confident instead of sitting around looking pretty. What are you, some kind of feminist?

10. You’ll be stronger, leaner and sexier – and we all know where that can lead!

And while we are on the subject of women and weights, a short rant.  I was doing a google search for an image and this popped up and it just made me mad.  I am not a fan of Jillian Michaels anyway, but this just proves she will put her name on anything.  This is a set of “Jillian Michaels” dumbbells.  What is wrong?  It contains a set of 3, 5 and 8 lb dumbbells.  Seriously?  Three pounds?!  How much do you think that bag of groceries (or two bags more likely) that you’re schlepping into the house weighs?  What about that kid you’re picking up and walking up the stairs with?  What about that piece of furniture you have to move to get the dog toy out from underneath it?  Why do we continue to tell women that all we need to do to get strong and develop some actual muscles is to pick up dumbbells no heavier than 8 lbs?  Pisses me off.

And while I’m on the subject, here’s another one.  I saw this while I was standing in line to buy a book at Barnes & Noble the other day.  The DVD advertises a “28 Day Bootcamp with Coach Nicole: Cardio and Strength.”  What is “Coach Nicole” holding in her hands?  How heavy do you think those babies are?  I’m guessing those are 3 lb dumbbells.  And while I’m being critical, I’m going to comment on “Coach Nicole’s” arms…I call those “skinny fat” arms.  Skinny fat is, unfortunately what too many women aspire to (in my opinion).  Her arms are “skinny” but they have no muscle…just fat.  This is not what I want women to aspire to.  I know we all have our own ideas about what the ideal female body looks like, and if you don’t want to look as muscular as the woman pictured above, I can live with that (although I think she looks amazing).  But please, please aspire to have some muscle and some definition to your body.  Skinny fat is all you’re going to get with 3 lb dumbbells, trust me.

Just to leave you with something positive, hopefully some inspiration, I am including a video of Neghar Fonooni participating in a challenge.  The challenge called for 3 exercises to be performed with a barbell load equal to your bodyweight: front squats, Romanian deadlifts and bench hip thrusts, one exercise with a barbell load equal to half your bodyweight (for the women): incline bench press, and one exercise using just bodyweight: chin-ups.  Maximum reps for each exercise, all 5 exercises had to be completed within an hour.  Here’s Neghar’s entry.  She could probably knock Coach Nicole over with one finger.  Now go out there and lift something heavy.

About Lisa Van Dore

I have lived in Sherborn, Dover and most recently North Walpole, for a total of 15 years (and counting). Having recently been through the process of selling a home and buying (and renovating) a new one, I understand the conflicting emotions of excitement and anxiety inherent in the process, whether you are a seller or buyer, whether this is your first home purchase or your tenth. I have a BA from the University of Michigan and an MBA from Indiana University. My early career found me working as a CPA, and later as the controller of Crate & Barrel. More recently I spent seven years running my own personal training business. I understand the hard work and dedication necessary to build a business and a reputation...most of my personal training clients came to me by referral and my first client was still with me when I decided to leave personal training. This speaks to the level of effort I put forth for my clients, week after week. On a more personal note, I raced triathlon for seven years and more recently completed my first half marathon. In my free time I enjoy cooking, reading, Maine, hiking and, in the fall, following college football...my teams are the University of Michigan (Go Blue!) and Texas Christian University (Go Frogs!).
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12 Responses to 10 Reasons Women Should Stay Away From Weights

  1. aliwentpaleo says:

    Great post! Couldn’t agree more!

  2. Brian Ward says:

    Great blog! I never thought about women-directed fitness products saying, “This is all you can handle”. I actually accepted this marketing toward limited ability because it’s everywhere, it’s the norm. I don’t want anyone selling my wife or daughter that message when I would never consider it for me. Shame on me for not realizing this on my own and thanks Lisa for opening my eyes!

    • I think the message is starting to get out there, but it is tough to convince women they will not get “bulky” from lifting heavy weights. If I can open a few people’s eyes, I am happy. Glad you liked the post, it has been very popular!

  3. Rach says:

    I love the video! something for me to work towards! I’m still at the early stages of weight training and can only DL my bodyweight now (70kg) but i would kill to be able to do what she did! Weightlifting by far has been the most enjoyable and rewarding form of exercise it still astounds me that women deny how fantastic it is! I am still unable to convince a single friend that it is worth it even tho I have proven results. I stand infront of them 15kg lighter and they still won’t listen and starve themselves (the randomly pig out) and lift their little pink weights! The fitter I get the more frustrated I am at them all!!!!!! anyway fantastic post, I just needed to rant!

    • I too am continually frustrated, but I would say most women just don’t know the truth…look at what the magazines tell them (and show them). Keep doing what you’re doing and maybe some day your friends will come around. There is a bit of a movement out there now, but it is still a very small army of women (and men) who get it.

  4. Jaci says:

    Cool post! Can’t wait to start lifting again after my pregnancy! I would rather have those muscles than sitting pretty!

  5. Lisbeth says:

    Love this! I wish more women would do what they love and set goals that WE want rather than what magazines, models and the damn TV tells us to enjoy and achieve. I really look forward to reading more of your posts!

  6. Katie says:

    Loved the blog! My only comment is – my trainer is a crossfit instructor so we incorporate a lot of crossfit into my sessions and I can DEFINITELY say that 8lb dumbells can be a lot when doing overhead presses (for example) in a circuit routine where you’re going for 7-8 minutes, with 4 exercises and doing 10-12 reps of each exercise. Usually that’s when my arms start giving out 🙂 Or maybe I’m a wuss and 8lbs isn’t all that much 😉

  7. Karen Waxler says:

    Dang, that girl’s a beast!! Love it. Forgive my ignorance here.. Can you explain what the bench hip thrusts are all about? I have never done those. I tend to stick to Oly/DL/Squats. Anyway, love this article. I work out at the YMCA, all alone, me and my little ziploc of chalk. I often kick curlers out of the squat rack – but nowadays they just see me and leave. I wish more women would get off the machines and pick up the barbell. It’s my therapy. Can’t wait til I can afford a rack setup in my garage. 🙂 ROCK ON LADIES!

  8. Trent says:

    Nice work! Enjoyed and posted to my clients, esp. my female ones who are afraid that going from pink to purple dumbbells will make them “bulky”!

  9. Pingback: 10 Reasons Women Should Stay Away From Weights - CrossFit 77

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