Should Men & Women Train Differently?

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope everybody enjoys turkey day and takes the opportunity to realize how much we all have to be thankful for. Also, I want everyone to lighten up and enjoy the good food and company that this time of year is so famous for.

You can get right back on the health and fitness bandwagon first thing Friday morning, but for T-day why not let loose and enjoy the food and festivities--unless of course there are health reasons such as diabetes or something like that prohibiting such behavior. I, for one, plan on strapping on the feedbag as I do every year and will be diligently working it off within a day or two of ingestion. It's all good!!

Now as for the question of men and women training styles and if they should be different: For the most part, not so much. However, it is truly according to what your individual goals are and what your fitness level is at the onset. Of course a woman shouldn’t train like a male power lifter, but as far as general fitness training goes there really isn’t a lot of difference.

If a man and a woman come to me wanting to feel better, lose a little weight, tone and condition or simply stave off the aging process, their routines can and may be very similar.

The biggest differences are many times the men will be stronger and they may want a bit more size or muscle growth than the woman wants. In that case, I will train the man a bit more aggressively with heavier weights and lower reps and maybe more overall sets; hence, a generally tougher workout. Also, I may do a bit more for the arms for a man than I do for a woman.

However, this is not always the case. Some men are not concerned in the least with getting bigger and they just want a good general fitness routine.

For a woman I generally do a bit more exercises for lower body because women are much more concerned with their butt and hips and such.

Other than that, the workouts are pretty much the same because there is no difference in female muscle and bones and male muscle and bones physiologically when it comes to what it takes to tone, condition, and reap the benefits of strength training. The thing that makes a man bulk up isn’t the exercise routine so much as it’s the testosterone.

In other words, I could train a man and a woman with the same routine and get two completely different results because of the male testosterone. But there is no such thing as one workout fits all. I design workouts with each specific client’s goal in mind.

If you'd like me to design a workout specifically for you, a workout that will turbo charge your fitness plan to produce results like you've never experienced before, please contact me and we can talk about getting you set up on the best workout program you've ever had. That is my promise and commitment to you, my loyal newsletter readers. Just be sure and mention you read about this offer in The Straightforward Fitness Flash and I'll give you an awesome loyal newsletter reader discount!

ANNOUNCEMENT: I have a new weekly Fitness Column in the SunConnect that comes out every Wednesday. It's called "The Trainer's Edge" and aside from the crappy, oversized picture, which I have no control over, I am quite pleased and proud to have this opportunity to write and be heard. Please be sure and check it out and tell all your friends about it! Thanks so much!!

This is the part of the newsletter where I picture an exercise and give explicit instructions on its proper execution.

Men and women alike want a firm and toned chest, especially as we age and certain body parts seem to want to go south. This problem is definitely not gender specific. So if you are a man in need of a man bra or a woman in need of a lift, this exercise will definitely be one you want to add to your routine. :)

DB (dumbbell) Fly
Primary Muscle Group Worked:
Secondary Muscle Group Worked: Shoulders, Triceps.
For a video demonstration of this exercise, click here.

Preparation: Lie on your back on a flat (as shown) or incline bench; hold a dumbbell in each hand above your shoulders with your elbows locked in a slightly bent position as shown.

Execution: Inhale as you move the dumbbells away from each other and lower them towards the floor, keeping the elbows locked in the slightly bent position. Exhale as you slowly return the dumbbells to the starting position. Repeat as required.

1) As you lower the dumbbells keep a slight bend locked into the elbows. In other words: Do not bend and straighten the arms at the elbows throughout this exercise. Picture making a circle with the arms at the top of the move and opening the circle as you lower the dumbbells, keeping the wrists straight and keeping the elbows flared throughout.
2) Keep elbows flared with weight distributed above the elbows as if wrapping your arms around a big tree.
3) Go slow and controlled.
4) Pause at the top of the move and squeeze the chest muscles before lowering the dumbbell.
5) Go just as slow in lowering the weight if not slower (two seconds down).

Always, always, always go slow and controlled! Remember form and technique trump heavy weights any day of the week, so keep this exercise light enough that you can execute perfect form. Choose a weight that makes the last two of 8-12 reps very challenging yet still doable in good form.

Okay, peeps! This is the inspirational part of the newsletter known as the "Ponder Pond" where you're welcome to take a swim in the sweet waters of inspiration.

This video is a switch from my normal warm and fuzzy vids. I figured maybe it's time for a laugh...whadayathink? Enjoy!

Well, that's about it for this time! I hope you enjoyed this month's newsletter and until the next issue, may the wind be at your back and improved health and vitality your new reality!

If you enjoyed this newsletter, please feel free to pay it forward to anyone you think would like it too. That is the best compliment you could ever pay me, and I appreciate it very, very much.

And don't forget to tell everybody about where they can get all the free fitness info their heart desires and sign up for this newsletter while they are there.

From my heart to your health,

Linda Burke, CPT

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