WHY WOMEN SHOULD LIFT WEIGHTS By Holly Perkins
Posted on 12 April 2016
I was approaching my 40th birthday and I was terrified.
My entire career is built upon my body, and what if everything begins to fall apart at 40? What if I go straight into menopause? Will I be dismissed in the industry because I’m too old? And what if I can no longer deadlift!?!?!
To ensure that I faced a full-on meltdown and crisis, the universe also decided to throw at me an unhappy marriage and a dying beloved dog. It was the perfect trifecta to knock me down so hard that for the first time in my life I started having anxiety attacks.
The only thing that felt right and certain in my life was the gym. More specifically… my strength workouts.
There is a moment during a challenging set of Deadlifts when you are faced with discomfort, pressure, fear and doubt. It is an important moment during any strength-training workout because it is when your muscles are approaching “Momentary Muscular Failure” and it signals an effective set.
In order for your muscles to become stronger, they must be challenged beyond their current ability. In essence, they must be forced to fail in order to become better.
During that brief moment when your muscles are approaching failure, you are faced with two choices: 1) To choose to say: “It’s too much, I can’t do it” or 2) To breathe through the pressure and try.
Something inside of me automatically chose to breathe. It was innate for me to just bear the pressure, pull like crazy, and attempt to get through the agony. It was during these intense Deadlift workouts that I began to see the metaphor.
If I have the ability to work through the discomfort in the gym, maybe I have the ability to work through the pain in my personal life. If I can use my breath as a tool to get me through 10 reps of heavy Deadlifts, maybe it will help to get me through another day in life.
Working through agony in the gym means that I will become stronger, physically.
And working through the hardship in life means that I will become stronger, emotionally.
Strength training is not about fitting into your skinny jeans.
It’s about you…becoming stronger.
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