Workout routines for women do not have to be that different from workout routines for men, with the exception of pregnancy. Women can work the same muscle groups and do the same cardio exercises as men and see results. It really all depends on your fitness goals; women tend to have different fitness goals than men. Most men want to bulk up and gain muscle mass, while most women wish to lose weight, burn fat and have some subdued muscle definition.
The routines that follow will help you achieve the above goals. Please see your doctor before beginning any workout routine to make sure you're physically ready to start exercising.
Options for Workout Routines for Women
Many women believe the myth that if they lift weight they will bulk up, gain too much muscle and look "manly." This is a falsehood and women who believe this myth are missing out. Men and women have completely different body makeups. Unless you put yourself on a female body builder's diet and strength training regimen, you will not gain too much muscle. Having a solid strength training routine that you perform two to three times per week will allow you to gain muscle definition and your feminine figure will not disappear.
Strength training plays a big role in losing weight; it's not all about cardio. Cardio is important as it burns excess calories while you're working out, but strength training builds muscle and to maintain itself, muscle requires fuel. This means by having more muscle you'll be burning more calories consistently throughout the day. This will most definitely help you lose weight.
Weightlifting workout routines for women should include strength training two to three times per week. You must give your muscles at least 48 hours to recover from your previous session.
You should try and work all the major muscle groups in your body during each session. If you wish, you can focus on certain areas of the body that you'd really like to improve. Here are some workout routines for common areas of the body that most women would love to have more toned:
Lower Body and Legs
- Three sets squats on Bosu ball
- Three sets lunges
- Three sets seated calf raises
- Three sets kneeling arm and alternating leg kicks
- Three sets hamstring curl with ball
Focus on the Butt
- Two sets of squats
- Two sets of hip extensions
- Two sets of one-legged dead lifts
- Two sets of one-legged squats with kick-backs
Abs - Easy/Moderate
- Three sets back extension
- Three sets bicycle crunches
- Three sets straight leg raises on bench
Hard Core Abs
- Three sets plank on Swiss ball
- Three sets kneeling rollout with ball
- Three sets crunches on Swiss ball
- Three sets plank with alternating legs
- Three sets reverse crunches
- Three sets back extensions
- Three sets lat pulldowns
- Three sets dumbbell front raises
- Three sets bicep curls
- Three sets triceps pushdowns
- Three sets dumbbell lateral raises
Remember before doing any strength training exercise you need to warm-up and cool down. This should include stretching all of the muscles you intend to exercise both before and after you do so.
Not only is cardio great for your heart, but it can also help you lose weight through burning excess calories. You have many options for cardio, but some cardio exercises will also help you strengthen and tone certain areas of your body. Here are some options:
- Butt: Go hiking or use the stair climber in your gym to get in a cardio workout and really work the muscles in your glutes and legs.
- Abs: Take an aerobics or cardio Pilates class that gives you a great cardio workout that is interspersed with ab exercises.
- Arms: Go kayaking or use the rowing machine at your gym to get a cardio workout and exercise your upper body.
Remember you should do cardio at least three times per week for a minimum duration of 30 minutes.
Having a workout routine that will help you meet your goals is an excellent idea. It will help you stay focused and on track while allowing you to rest assured that you're performing the right exercises to tone up the areas you want and lose weight.