Just when I thought I had seen it all, I saw the unthinkable – a young woman doing bench presses with an imaginary pair of dumbbells. Not sure what fitness magazine that one came out of but I fail to understand the logic behind her exercise choice. Now I might be jumping to conclusions here – she could be doing this to improve her range of motion or as part of a physio program to rehab an injury, however, she wasn’t having any difficulty doing her “bench press” and she was only in her early 20s. Given the evidence, I feel justified in assessing her exercise as a complete and utter waste of time.
To put this into context a little, I should mention that I was working out at a women’s only gym in Halifax. Women’s gyms are notoriously good for people like me who like to lift heavy weights and work hard because 90% of the women who go there just hop on an elliptical and waste a few hours doing steady state cardio. “Weight training” typically consists of “toning” exercises like our friend with the invisible dumbells, though usually little pink 2lb dumbbells are the “weapon of choice”. Thus, at the women’s only gym I get to use all the heavy weights, benches, and whatever else I want with the added bonus of not having to deal with meat heads giving me the once over and half naked girls in hot pants and makeup taking up space.
Want to know a secret ladies? If you want to get fit and lose fat, you need to train the same way that a man does. You need to do things that are hard – pushups, pullups, dips, squats, deadlifts, sprints, etc. You will not get “manly” muscles because you don’t have enough testosterone in your body (I’m assuming you are not taking anabolic steroids). You also have to eat a lot of food to put on more muscle mass, a fact that most women don’t consider. If you are eating well and working hard in the gym, you are going to become leaner, stronger, and healthier 🙂
Here’s a simple workout you can do at home (or anywhere!) to blast fat and boost your metabolism:
5 min warmup of light jogging, skipping, jumping jacks, etc.
- SB Pushups (feet on ball) x 10
- Walking lunges with OH press x 10 each side
- Broom handle pullups (place a broom handle over 2 chairs and use it to pull your body up) x amap
- Plank crawlers x 12 each side
- Burpees x as many as possible
- 1 min rest
REPEAT the circuit 5-6 times.