Muscle = Sexy

Ladies, I wanted to give you some tips for building a sexy body.

For the most part, everything that goes into building a sexy body for a man is pretty much applicable for the ladies. The thing is, I need to do a ‘soft sell’ on the muscle building tips when I speak to women because most women have a fear that they’ll ‘get big’. So I need to dispel some myths to help you get your sexy on.

Here we go…

Tip #1 – Lose the pink dumb bells

To me, and many others, muscle = sexy…(within reasonable limits).

I’m not talking extreme slabs of beef as seen on some professional female bodybuilders that some may find offensive. You know who I’m talking about, the ones that you’re not quite sure if they’re a man or a woman under that bikini.

I’m talking about shapely, defined and toned muscle. Of course the amount or size of the muscle on a woman is totally a personal choice, but my guess is that most people prefer a little muscle versus a soft and squishy dough like appearance.

In order for a woman to put on a little muscle, the pink dumb bells have to go. They need to be traded up for some dirty ole iron. Surprisingly, I still get so many comments from women that they don’t want to put on muscle because they may get ‘too big’.

Trust me, its not that easy.

First of all, muscle is much denser than fat, that is, it will take up less space so a woman will not necessarily ‘get big’ from lifting heavy weights. It’s actually very difficult to gain significant muscle without purposefully eating a specific kind of diet (or turn to pharmaceuticals).

A woman WILL get big from overeating. When a nutrition plan goes unchecked, a woman lifting weights can put on size, just as if she wasn’t weight training. This weight or size gained is most likely NOT all muscle but predominantly fat.

It seems that heavy weight lifting gets a bad rap when in fact it’s poor nutrition that should be taking the blame for beefy looking girls in the weight room.

When nutrition is in check, muscle is built and fat doesn’t necessarily accumulate. Muscle is helpful in keeping fat at bay since it’s metabolically active. It takes more calories to maintain muscle as opposed to fat (which is pretty much dead weight). Getting and keeping muscle on the female frame is the fountain of youth as far as I’m concerned since it keeps the metabolism stoked.

Tip #2 – Get One Hormone Working For You

I get so many comments from women that say their hormones are preventing them from achieving the body they want. While hormones, especially fluctuating hormones, can present a challenge for looking and feeling super sexy, it’s not all bad news.

There are ways to manipulate one fat storage hormone: insulin. An elevated insulin level is the major culprit in adding fat. Women tend to eat more carbohydrates (sugar) than necessary; this can cause a spike in blood sugar and as a result a dump of insulin to off set the blood sugar spike.

To avoid this, do the following:

·      Eat your carbs in the morning when you’re more likely to burn off the calories and you aren’t insulin resistant.

·      Eat protein and healthy fat with your carb intake to slow gut emptying

·      Avoid starchy carbs (anything white such as white bread, bagels, rice, potatoes, pasta, etc), especially before bed

·      Eat more veggies in the evening meals/snacks

·      Stop eating before you feel full. It takes your brain about 20 minutes to catch up with your belly. Once you’ve gotten to the ‘full stage’, you’ve likely overeaten.

By moderating insulin levels, you can help control fat storage.

Tip #3 – Mix It Up!

If you want to get results you’ve never gotten before, you need to do things you’ve never done in the past…

To get lean and sexy, you need to consistently present challenges to your body that will build muscle and keep the metabolism stoked.

Training variety keeps you motivated and invariably leads to better results.

Some would say that ‘cross training’ is the key.  That is to swim, bike, row, play tennis, whatever, to get the body of your dreams. While I see merit to other ‘sporting activities’, I’m a gym rat and feel that I need to do resistance training in order to keep my shape. Yes, those other things will keep me fit, but to me, I do resistance training in order to do those other things more effectively.

I lift weights to be a better at things like snow boarding, climbing, surfing.  Hey, I tried surfing recently and got up first try. I believe it’s because I have great strength and balance developed through my workouts.

So, when I say ‘mix it up’, I’m talking about training variety within the realm of resistance training. (And get out and do other activities on top of your workouts!).

There are SO many ways to change up a workout. Actual infinite possibilities…

You can change:

·      rep scheme

·      exercise order

·      body parts trained together

·      rest periods

·      counting reps vs. timed sets

·      from body weight or free weight exercises to machine exercises

·      from barbells to dumb bells

·      training with both limbs to single limb

These are just a few of the many ways to change up a program. But the key is to never do the same workout twice in a six-week period.

Training variety will up your sexy factor, and it also keeps training fresh and fun.

Tip #4 – Work Your Back (side)

Speaking of sexy, let’s talk about your bum.

Plain and simple.

In order to look sexy, you need to address your bottom.

Two of the best exercises for your glutes are the squat and the lunge.

No, neither of these movements will make your legs ‘too big’. If your bum is getting big, don’t blame it on the squats, it’s likely wonky nutrition.

building muscle for women

When you squat, body weight or with an added load, make sure you’re sitting your bum back, bending at the hips first and then bending at the knee. I know this sounds crazy, but often times people will bend at the knees first causing the weight to shift to the toes; this has the potential to cause knee pain.

building muscle for women

As for lunges, you can add to it’s effectiveness by increasing the depth of the lunge. You can even lunge onto a step or a stair to increase range of motion to really engage the glut.

Both these exercises can be metabolically challenging, especially when you add weight to them. You can lunge and squat until you’re blue in the face though and your bum may not look a lick different unless you’re challenging yourself. So add some weight, increase your rep tempo, decrease your rest, add a plyo element (jump) to the movement and you’ll progress much faster.

Tip #5 – Get your sexy back…

By this I literally mean: train your back.

It’s easiest to do pushing exercises and ignore pulling exercises. ‘Push’ muscles are generally on the anterior (front) of your body and more noticeable (to you), but trust me, a sexy back and posterior (backside) is very appealing.

Most people tend to be tight through their chest/shoulder region due to lifestyle: sitting at a computer, desk work, driving, poor posture.

By training the back, you can improve posture, ease back pain and strain and even look leaner and sexier.

As a general rule of thumb, in my boot camps, I try to ensure that we do at least a 50-50 split on the push/pull exercises, if not a little more pulling when possible. I have to be creative to find things to hang from for assisted pull up type exercises, as well, we’ll do dumb bell rows, and use exercise bands and tubes to train the back.

building muscle for women

Body weight pulling exercises can be a challenge for those that are just starting out. Seriously, who can do even close to a pull up? And if you can’t, then what?

You’ll find a ton of variations and modifications to back exercises, including the pull up and how to master it, in my program.

building muscle for women

There you have it girls, five tips to getting a sexier physique.

The male and female physique isn’t terribly different when it comes to training. When I train, I pretty much do everything a man would, except train traps (I hear the thick-necked look is out now…)

Honestly, if a dude were to implement these tips into his fitness routine, you’d also see him get his sexy on mighty quick as well.