Society has taught women to avoid putting on muscle, because it looks too “manly”. However, for some women trying to lose weight past a certain point could be simply unhealthy. A psychologist and body image expert at Boise State University, Mary Pritchard, Ph.D. says “The message that our value is based on our thinness is all over our society”.
Jen Sinkler, a contributor for Women’s health fitness promotes a different approach. One that throws away the conventional trimming and weight loss, and focuses on muscle gain. She says “By focusing on muscle gain, you’re able to shift the conversation around women’s bodies”. This allows women to feel great about their bodies, and the stigma that is attached to bulking up will be a thing of the past.
For some of us forcing our bodies to shrink is not what our body biology actually wants to do. We all have unique bodies, and for that reason you cannot expect to have the same size thighs as the women next.
Then there are the health benefits of putting on muscle. When we increase muscle mass our metabolism increases and this promotes hormone balance, blood flow, heart health and a whole lot more. Also more muscle means that fat will burn at a faster rate, so ironically by putting on muscle losing the fat becomes easier.
When deciding whether to bulk up or become smaller there is no right or wrong answer. Listen to what your body is saying to you and do what makes you happy, but what you shouldn’t do is listen to the outdated stereotypes!
If you’re interested in learning more about NW Women’s Fitness and getting on track to a healthier life, contact us today!