Mention weightlifting and most people will automatically think of very large men, throwing ridiculous amounts of weight around... Or perhaps Olympic Weightlifters who's skill and strength are beyond anything we could even imagine for ourselves.
Well, we're here to tell you that weightlifting is for everyone. Athletes do it, our members do it, our CrossFit Kids do it, heck even my 65 year old mum does it. There are a lot of misconceptions out there, so let's clear some up!
Misconception 1: You Need to be a Large Person To Lift
Many people think that to lift weights, you have to be quite a large human. It doesn't matter what size you are, you can lift weights that are relative to your size and strength. Choose a weight that is challenging for your reps and give it 100%.... Remember, Size is not a predictor of strength.
A great example is Australian Athlete Tia-Clair Toomey was selected to compete at the Rio Olympics in the 58kg division and despite her small size, Tia’s personal best combined for weightlifting is 194 kilograms. Pretty awesome ha?
Misconception 2: You Have to be Fit
You do not need to be the next Tia-Clair Toomey to start lifting weights.... otherwise our classes would be empty! Start with lighter weights, in manageable sets and work on your technique. This will help you safely and smoothly transition into more challenging lifting. A good coach will help you through this. Including weights into a good training program with lots of conditioning exercises (running, rowing, body-weight movements etc.) is perfect if your just starting out.
If you've been grinding in the gym for a couple of years and want to take it to the next level, why not try Olympic Weightlifting? Perfecting these skillful movements can take years, but the strength, power, speed and coordination that comes with it happens much faster.
Misconception 3: Lifting Weights Will Make You Big and Bulky
This is simple – you will not get bulky unless you want to. Putting on muscle is HARD, it's a long process that requires a lot of heavy training, eating more food, recovering and commitment. If you're a regular gym-goer who just want to be lean and healthy, then the 1 hour you spend at the gym each day will not get you massive... unfortunately for some.
If getting "bulky" is a concern, then we're here to tell you to stop worrying because it won't happen without a conscious, purposeful effort toward that goal. Plus there are just too many benefits to lifting weights that will improve your life! Worry about your health, your quality of life, longevity and energy. All of which are improved by weightlifting.
Misconception 4: Weightlifting is Not for Women
The worst misconception out there! Weightlifting is excellent for women for many of the same reasons as men. Lose fat have a faster metabolism, feel athletic and capable and spend a lotttt less time doing boring cardio. Females are generally worried about bulking up too...*read above*.... Men have 7-8 times more testosterone than women which makes it even harder to gain muscle.... but all the more reason to lift weights!
Aside from the physical benefits the mental shift is probably the most important. It requires so much technique, skill and power to lift a certain amount of weight, especially in Olympic Weightlifting. Once you start to get the hang of it and feel strong there is so much self belief, sense of accomplishment and pride that comes with it. Your outlook on life will go from "I CAN'T, to "I CAN" very quickly.
And honestly, who doesn’t want to be feel like an independent, strong and determined woman?
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