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Strength Training for Women


WebMD Weight Loss Clinic-Feature

Ladies, would you like to finally get going on a fitness program that you can do at home, one created for women? Does becoming stronger, with lean, long muscles sound appealing? Fitness expert Wini Linguvic joined us on July 12, 2005.

If you have questions about your health, you should consult your personal physician. This event is meant for informational purposes only.

MODERATOR: Welcome to WebMD Live, Wini. Thank you for joining us today. I was always told that women shouldn't train for strength. Obviously this is a myth?

LINGUVIC: Absolutely a myth. Women need to be strong. They need to be strong to lift their babies, carry their briefcases and get through life.

MODERATOR: What can you do to increase your strength without looking like Arnold?

LINGUVIC: It is pretty impossible to look like Arnold. Unfortunately, that fear holds a lot of women back from improving their bodies. The program in Lean, Long & Strong offers exercises you can do at home to get you stronger and bring out the definition in your body. Women don't have the testosterone to get big muscles. Even if they lifted heavy weights, it's pretty hard to look like Arnold. Actually, it's pretty hard for most guys to look like Arnold.

Strength training will bring out definition and get you stronger but will not increase bulk. The key is the correct exercises combined with a sensible diet and a serving of aerobics. The exercises that women most commonly do to bring out definition don't really work. They do hundreds and hundreds of repetitions, spend hours and hours on the treadmill and wonder why their bodies don't change. So it's time to try strength training.

MEMBER QUESTION: How much strength training needs to be done per week to show results?

LINGUVIC: I would suggest three days a week of strength training to get results. If you're just starting out, two days is fine, but three days a week will bring you the best results. Your workouts don't have to be long, yet they should be efficient with the right exercises.

MEMBER QUESTION: How long should each weight training session last?

LINGUVIC: Your weight training session could last anywhere from 15 to 45 minutes, depending on what you're doing. More is not necessarily better. You want to have a good program that hits your muscles without overdoing it. Your workout should not be more than 45 minutes -- tops. You can have a great workout in 15 minutes if you have the right routine to do.

MEMBER QUESTION: What are the 'right' exercises?

LINGUVIC: The right exercises are exercises that utilize your whole body in a functional way. What I mean by that is you're not sitting on a machine pushing a weight with your legs. When in real life do you sit on a machine and push a weight with your legs? In real life you stand, lunge, bend and lift.

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