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Strength Training for Women

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continued...

LINGUVIC: No. A resistance band is better than no band, and for some exercises it can be very effective, such as adductor and abductor work (your inner thighs), when you need to move your legs laterally. If you were on the road and all you had was a resistance band, that would be fine, but ideally you want to be able to increase the amount of weight you're using as you get stronger and there's no way to do that with one single band. If that's all you have, though, that's better than not using anything at all.

There are a lot of exercises in Lean, Long & Strong that don't require any weights at all. You don't need dumbbells or resistance bands. These exercises rely on body weight, such as lunges, plies and pushups. As you get better at certain exercises you add weight to increase the challenge. With a band it's hard to quantify how much weight you're at.

MEMBER QUESTION: What type of weights do you recommend?

LINGUVIC: I recommend a set of dumbbells to start off, perhaps a 5 pound, an 8 pound and a 10 pound, depending on your fitness level.

I highly prefer dumbbells to exercise machines, for the reasons I've said before. In other words, if you sit down on a machine and press something up, you're really getting good at sitting on a machine and pressing something up. If you sit on a ball or stand in a squat position and press up a set of dumbbells, not only are you working your shoulders, you're working your core muscles, which are your abdominals and lower back, and you're challenging your balance and coordination. In real life, we need all of those things.

MEMBER QUESTION: Do you need to go to the gym daily to workout?

LINGUVIC: No. You can do the workouts in Lean, Long & Strong at home or at the gym. You can do a workout at home with a set of dumbbells and a mat -- and I really like an exercise ball. If you like going to the gym every day, be sure to vary your workout and not to lift weights every day.

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