I’d like more ladies to train like men. Yep, you heard that right.
I have zero tolerance for “I don’t sweat” or “I need to look cute” …I’m much more a fan of the sweat like a pig to look like a fox approach. Which brings me to the topic for todays training show: Do Ladies Need To Train Differently To Men?
In a word, NO.
That’d be a pretty short show though right… so let’s dig a little deeper.
First and foremost how a lady trains should depend on her GOAL rather than her gender.
For someone with a goal that involves shedding some fat and rocking a fit looking body than the basics are going to be the same. Guy or Gal.
1. Lift every weights, 2-4 times a week preferably in a metabolic resistance style circuit of compound exercises.
2. Include 1-2 short high intensity interval training sessions.
3. Increase incidental exercise such as walking.
The more specific you get – when we start to talk about choosing your curves and the lean muscle you want to sculpt, that’s when there are going to be differences in the way a lady trains. Small differences.
However these differences still primarily come down to goal rather than gender.
It’s about how you want your body to look.
The ladies I train tend to want a body that looks slim in jeans, fit in gym gear, feminine in a dress, sexy in a bikini.
And that’s both absolutely doable and completely different to what most guys are looking for.
So, and again I’m looking at a body composition goal rather than fitness or strength or anything else… to break down that goal and build the chick with a bangin bod, it might look like this:
Slim yet shapely firm legs.
A tight, round butt.
A strong sexy back.
A firm flat belly.
Toned yet feminine arms and shoulders.
Perhaps your bangin looks different – and that’s totally cool – however just in case you like the sound of the body parts I’ve just described here are a few of the exercises I’d prioritise to sculpt them.
While the gents may be content with squats, dead-lifts, the leg press and on occasion the odd lunge. The range of lower body love exercises I recommend for my ladies is a lot broader.
In order only of my own personal preference I would ALSO include: the split squat, the step down, and the side plank leg raise.
Why? The first two are supremely awesome for sculpting that round butt without too much emphasis on – and I hesitate to say this as the last thing I want to do is fuel the ‘bulk’ myth – however, the emphasis is building some butt size and shape rather than focusing on the quadriceps so much. Those quadriceps are much more easily going to get enough work to have them looking nice and shapely anyway… it’s more a matter of whittling away at any excess fat that may like to hang around your thighs as it does round mine.
While too many gents are dominating the bench press and focusing on chest, back is where it really should be at. Ok, I’d be lying if I suggested I don’t appreciate great pecs as part of an in proportion body… however back to us ladies, as I discovered – with great disappointment – many years ago, bench does not grow our boobs.
The benefit to this, it is leaves us a lot more time in our work-out week to dedicate to back. From a postural point of view the boys should be doing that too however let’s stick to a few essentials for a strong sexy back.
In order again only of my own personal preference I would include: wide grip chin ups (assisted is fine), 1 arm DB row, reverse grip lat pull down (I like reverse as it means I don’t need to bother with biceps on their own and the bicep curl is not a high bang for your fat burning buck exercise) and a wide grip BB bent over row.
Your firm belly and toned yet feminine arms and shoulders are going to take a lot less time to sculpt.
Yes, the gents may dedicate a day to ‘arms’ and a day to ‘shoulders’ however they are generally looking to build some size. For belly, you know the answer from last show 044 ‘Exercises For A Flat Belly’ …it’s about your food first.
I would steer clear of weighted core exercises as a firm belly will come from shedding fat rather than building muscle.
In order again only of my own personal preference I would include: some sort of dip for your triceps (I love popping my feet on a medicine ball for some additional instability and challenge), some sort of press for your shoulders (I love a standing dumbbell shoulder press at the moment as its totally unsupported and incorporates a lot more core) and finally a snatch to eccentric shoulder press for shoulder and triceps (I love this as it’s unique and let’s me lift heavier than I can with a regular press and gets my heart rate up).
For a complete work-outs – by body part – and pictures to describe most of the exercises I’ve mentioned today check out my work-outs page – Fat loss moves to choose your curves:
A couple of things Guys and Gals absolutely without a doubt need to do the same:
1). Train at a high intensity with great form and heavy weights.
To be more specific, I mean choose the heaviest weights you can lift without sacrificing technique.
Keep your rest time to a minimum. Give each and every repetition of each and every set your 100% focus.
So, no texting while meandering through the never-ending set of whatever.
2). Commit to consistency.
Perhaps this is even more important for the gals. Years spent working with more guys than gals has proven my suspicion that when it comes to staying in shape the guys generally do have it a little easier.
I see what the guys I work with eat… and drink… and even the most disciplined of them can ‘get away’ with a whole different level of easing off the plan than I can.
It’s not poor me, it’s just a fact.
You’ve likely seen the couple – perhaps you’ve been part of the couple – where guy and gal commit to the same level of exercise and the same eating plan for the same period of time.
I think you know what’s coming… the guy sheds a whole lot more weight than the girl a whole lot faster. Even if they have the same amount to lose. Even if they follow the same plan just as diligently. Actually often the female may be more diligent and still her results are slower to show.
Frustrating and unfair however the fact is men have more muscle – even if they are not in awesome shape – than women. And muscle means a faster metabolism and there in lies your solution to the: ‘Why did he lose fat so much faster than me?’ query.
It’s also one of the reasons why when a lady wants to lose fat, the most important exercise component is to lift weights… and build lean muscle… and increase her metabolism rather than up the cardio anti.
Rather than racing back down that rabbit hole, let’s get actionable with today.
Are you 100% clear on what your goal looks like?
It’s amazing how many people have zero clarity on how they want it to be… the non-surprising thing is they make little progress. Less fat is not a goal. When you can communicate it you can have it. Equally the things you don’t have yet you tend to have difficulty languaging. I’m not sure if that’s a word however I’ll trust you get what I mean.
It’s worth the effort to practice getting good at knowing exactly how you want it to be.
That’s todays actions step.
That’s it for today – tomorrow I’ll be back to expand on one of my most popular blog posts the FAQ: What Would You do if You Had To Start Again?
If you liked this you’ll also like: Consistency for Fat Loss v. Lean & Cut to Swallowed a Sheep!
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