Fitness

Weight Loss: Men vs Women

It is not a myth. Women and men do lose weight very differently. Even the way men and women diet and respond to exercise are different in many ways.  Some of these differences can be blamed on biology while behavior is another factor. For the most part, men have a slight advantage but we as women should not give up.  We all want to be the perfect weight and it will be difficult individually to say the least.  I am going to help you understand how the two genders differ in weight loss and how to overcome it, in hopes to make it easier for us women to not feel so defeated before we even begin to exercise.

Metabolic Rate

Studies have shown that men tend to have a higher metabolism, anywhere from 3 to 10 percent higher.  Men also have more muscle that women, which burns more calories than fat. Women generally have more body fat than men do, which affects the basic metabolic rate as well as how many calories burn.  Metabolic rate is based on muscle mass.  Women tend to have less muscle and more fat cells. But not worry ladies, there is still hope.  We just have to change how we workout and diet.

What Affects Metabolism In Women

Pregnancy and menopause also affect weight lose.  In both situations, women gain weight and more body fat.  During menopause, weight is generally gained in the abdomen area causing loss of hormones and slow metabolism.  Whereas in pregnancy, weight is gained during the pregnancy process.  After pregnancy, it is simply more difficult to exercise and sleep with the new baby.

Thyroid hormone levels also increase during pregnancy and around menopause.  Thyroid hormone levels regulate weight and metabolism and is more common in women.

There is also a condition called Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) which is a hormonal imbalance that causes women to have irregular menstrual cycles and weight loss much more difficult.  Between 5 and 10 percent of women have PCOS but it is still possible to loss weight.

What Is the Best Workout?

In the gym, I tend to work more on my cardio fitness than lifting.  But I notice men tend to work more on heavy lifting, making those muscles and raising the metabolic rate. Most women do not do lifting, mostly due to not wanting to look masculine. But studies show that it takes a lot of testosterone for a women to even slightly begin to have a masculine figure from lifting weights.

It is recommended to use free weights or resistance bands to help gain muscle mass for women.  Using your own body for resistance by doing things like push-ups, lunges, even squats.  Another option would be to join a Pilates class.  Pilates is a good way to meet other women as well that may be experiencing the same weight losing issues you are experiencing.  Building more muscle will actually burn more calories.  No need to worry though, we do not need to lift hundreds of pounds to build muscle.  Simply lifting the heaviest, or even next to the heaviest, for 10 perfect form reps. This should increase your testosterone level and optimize your muscle building potential.  And don’t worry ladies, we won’t turn masculine from lifting weights.

No More Stress Eating

Listen more to your body when you get hungry.  Eating 6 smaller meals a day will help you to not over eat or snack when you are not actually hungry.  Eating foods like leaner proteins, healthy fats, limiting simple carbs and more fruits and veggies.  Limit those simple carbs like sugar, white bread and sweetened drinks.  And for those women over 50, it is recommended  by nutritionist to cut back on salts while maintaining adequate calcium and Vitamin D.

Overall, less snacking and more lifting should balance out what us women have to overcome in order to loss those extra pounds.  Of course, each of us will vary in how fast or slow we lose if we follow this plan to lose weight.  If you have the will to lose, then the way will be difficult but possible.  Having a healthy appetite along with light weight lifting will help you burn those calories faster and boost your metabolism.  Do not discourage because you are simply a women and have to work harder to lose the weight.  We just have more to overcome but in the long run will make you healthier and happier.

Let me know what you think and give it a try.  I love to hear stories from my readers on how they lost weight.  Follow me and read more stories from me as I publish daily.   Together we can achieve health and happiness.

 

 

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