I have been talking up boot camp for awhile now, and it’s because I have seen changes in my body like I never saw when I was just running. I always assumed I was “in shape” because I could run a marathon, but y’all, I really wasn’t in overall good health/shape. lifting weights has helped me in so many ways though!
I have urged, begged, and pleaded with you in the past to start strength training if you are mainly just doing cardio, and yup, I’m going to do it again. I would love to make a believer out of you! Here are five things I have learned since I started lifting.
1.) You burn calories for a longer period of time: When you are lifting weights, you have the potential to burn calories for HOURS after, even while you sit on your couch. Your muscles have to repair themselves, so yup, better calorie burn for you, without the extra work! I don’t know about you, but I much prefer burning calories in my PJ’s on the couch than actually having to stay at the gym for an extra hour.
2.) You will look better: Let’s face it. Someone who looks strong looks healthy. My posture is better, my arms look better in a tank top, and I have gotten rid of a lot of excess jiggly flab all over my body. I feel way more toned and tight than I ever did just running.
3.) You will run faster: Lifting weights has made my legs way stronger, so I am able to run faster than before with less running workouts. I have the strength to hold my body in proper running form longer, too. I was so surprised to PR in a 5K a couple years ago because at the time I was only running once a week!
4.) You probably won’t bulk up: I say probably because you can bulk up, but it is highly unlikely it will happen unless you are trying to. When healthy, I go to boot camp and lift four days a week and while I am more toned, I do not feel bulky at all. Don’t let this common misconception stop you!
5.) You will feel more confident: Looking better, feeling better, and being able to do more with my body has given me such a sense of accomplishment. I am not as afraid to try new things, and I am so thankful that for all that my body does for me every day. It’s just this overall sense of wellness that is kind of addicting. Join me?
As always, please check with your doctor before starting an exercise routine. You will probably be really sore at first but don’t give up! Sore is good. Live for the sore! Let’s all be healthy and fit this spring and summer.
QOTD: Do you lift weights? How does it make you feel? Has it helped you in other areas like running or another sport?
I love lifting weights! It’s amazing how much even light lifting can elevate your fitness progress. I like that you mention that it’s improved your running because I don’t think everyone realizes just how much lifting weights compliments cardio-type fitness activities.
I used to not believe it, but I had personally seen results so call me a believer!
I love lifting! I was way more toned when I lifted while running than just running now. I need to get back into it. I know a lot of people get worried about “bulking” up and I’m glad you addressed it here. It takes a LOT for ladies to bulk up.
I love strength training, and I upped it to almost every day when I was doing PT. All the various exercises are great, and I feel accomplished, especially if I’m sore the next day. I have noticed I feel stronger and faster and I hope to continue all of that.
Yes, me too!
I completely agree with everything you said! I incorporate kettle bell into my circuit training exercises twice a week, do hand weight reps twice a week on my run/speed training days and lift barbell and do bar squats twice a week on my distance run days two times a week. I love how it tones and tightens and yes!! to the after burn effect! I’m very fit but definitely not bulky. Might I add, 42 years old and four children. Best shape of my life now!
Way to go! I love kettle bells!
YES! Weights!! I was just texting a friend of mine last night after filling in my next race training plan that it wasn’t complete because I needed to add more weight training and some rest days (ha!).
How should someone begin to incorporate lifting/strength training into a routine at the gym? It would be awesome to see a daily/weekly schedule with even some “how-to” video clips!
Does your gym have any strength classes like body pump? I always feel like that’s a great way to get started bc they tell
You what to do
Unfortunately, no. 🙁 I go to a Planet Fitness, and I love that they have a ton of machines, but classes are lacking.
oh bummer! I don’t really use typical machines. I use squat racks, TRX, push sleds, do body weight exercises, medicine balls, etc.