As a woman who wants to get into bodybuilding, you are in a different situation than men. Women do not have enough natural testosterone to grow the large and bulky muscles men can grow. Since bodybuilding is geared toward the building of visible muscles, it is more intense and requires a higher commitment than weightlifting as a recreational pursuit. Weightlifting for strength gain also fortifies the bones, a distinct benefit for women in the fight against osteoporosis.
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Starting out into a bodybuilding program begins with an assessment of your goals. If you plan to go into competitions, you will most likely have to take supplements such as creatine to enhance your ability. Natural bodybuilding and bodybuilding with supplements both require a strict workout plan, diet, and a lifestyle.
Find a gym that is equipped with a variety of machines and free weights. Work with a personal trainer to learn how to perform every exercise correctly, especially if you have no prior knowledge of weightlifting.
Build yourself up by strengthening major muscle groups first. Balance your sessions so you train opposing muscle groups. As your strength increases, add free weights to target small muscles and gain definition.
Regular cardiovascular exercise is part of a healthy weightlifting regimen. As the heart is trained, it is able to supply your muscles with more oxygen and nutrients.
Enough rest is just as much a part of successful bodybuilding as weightlifting. Get 48 hours of rest between workout sessions. Sleep at least seven hours every night. During the rest phase, your muscle repairs itself and grows stronger in the process. Going rested into your next workout enables you to lift more weight and work harder toward your goal.
Work with a nutritionist to develop an eating plan that gives you enough protein and fat to meet your caloric needs. As a rule of thumb, you should eat one gram of protein for every two pounds of body weight. Your natural testosterone production increases by eating more meat.
- The Exercise Bible; Joanna Hall, 2003
- The Slow Burn Fitness Revolution; Frederick Hahn, Michael Eades, M.D., 2003