Ladies, strength training isn't just for the guys - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Ladies, strength training isn't just for the guys

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You're ready to get in shape. You want to lose weight. So, should you do cardio or concentrate on strength training? The answer… is BOTH!

If you tend to shy away from the idea of pumping iron, then you may not have to. Strength training can make a huge difference for women as we get older. But, it may surprise you to learn that only about 20 percent of women actually lift weights. Atlanta fitness trainer Karen Schrier says that statistic left her wondering ‘Why not?'

One of the first things you notice about Karen is that she's strong. That's what she wants for not only her client 43-year-old Tina Tait, but for all women, as well.
 
"But, I think that the reason why I started doing what I do is that I would go into the gym and see so many women were going into the gym and looking at the weights and not knowing what to do with them," Karen said.

She added that women automatically go for a cardio workout, thinking they don't have time for strength training.
 
Karen said, "If I have 30 minutes, I'm going to get my heart rate high and lose my fat. That's what women think. They don't really want to dedicate time, precious time, to working out with weights."

If you want to get stronger, then you need both cardio and strength training. Cardio burns fat while you're working out, but muscle burns calories – all day long. Karen says you don't have to pump serious iron. You can even use your body as resistance.

And, don't forget your cardio. If you're new to working out, then start by walking. Then, step it up by alternating walking with running until you hit your stride.

Karen said, "Even if you only have 20 minutes, I prefer 30 or 40; but, if you've got 20 minutes, don't just say ‘I don't have enough time,' and go sit on the couch. Give it that 20 minutes.  Even if it's running up and down the stairs in your house that day. It's that important."
    
Still need a little nudging toward the weights. Well, one study found that women who strength trained two times a week for 10 weeks were able to decrease their body far by three percent.

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