Making it a breeze to haul around a load of groceries or a heavy backpack is the kind of goal many women have in mind when they begin a weight lifting program.
Strength training at home with a women’s weight lifting program suited to their ability, age, and lifestyle or the gym is the answer. But simply putting in the time working out is not alone enough.
Why am I not getting stronger?
Think you’re doing everything right but your exercise routine for women is no longer giving you the same results? Here’s some things you may be doing wrong:
Not Planning Ahead: Don’t waste your time and sweat. Head to the gym with a plan for the day and a way to track your results. Seeing that you’ve been stuck on a weight for 3 weeks now might just be the kick in the butt you need to do just a few more reps and keep those gains coming.
Not Using Time Wisely: Resting the proper amount between each set is important! Make sure you get about 90-120 seconds of rest between sets. Any less and you’re not allowing your body enough time to recover if training for strength is your goal. Any more and you’ve gone past the recovery stage and into the time wasting phase.
Not Switching Things Up: Doing the same routine day after day, week after week doesn’t just bore you to tears, it also hampers your long-term results. Something as simple as switching from doing curls on a machine to using dumbbells could be the difference you need.
Not Using Enough Weight: If you’re reaching the last reps of your last set with barely any cries for help coming from your muscles, you’re not challenging yourself. Add enough weight to make it tough without messing up your form or making it too tough to control the weight safely. If you’re trying for 12 reps of an exercise, you should have trouble getting past 8-9 reps of your last set.
Not Doing the Right Amount of Reps: If you’re looking to get stronger, your amount of reps for each set should be on the lower side. Keep your reps to about 4-6 per set at a weight that’s high enough to keep you working hard.
Not Eating Enough: Getting stronger means putting on muscle, and to do that you need to be bringing in more calories than you’re burning. Eat 500 calories per day over your BMR (calculate it here) to gain 1 pound of good weight per week. Don’t worry about the number on the scale going up, you’ll look better in the mirror and feel better in your everyday life than you ever have.
Not a Newbie: Your strength gains will never come as fast as they do in your first few months of lifting. These are called “newbie gains.” If you’re eating enough, pushing yourself during your workouts and getting a proper amount of rest and still find your strength increases slowing, this is a possible culprit. Just look at it as a badge of honor that shows your commitment.
Getting stronger is a complex issue that is a result of not only these things but also your diet, routine, rest and genetics. Make sure you’re eating enough, keeping your routine fresh (and tracking the results) and pushing yourself each time you workout and the results will come with time!
Good luck and keep sweating!