Friday, April 12, 2013

Strong is the New Skinny

You've probably seen this picture before.

And you know it's true - muscle is more compact and can look better. Well, I am here to make the final argument that STRONG is definitely, without a doubt, coming into its own. Skinny is fine - and I don't wish to knock anyone's body type or body image.
This post is dedicated to the girls who are afraid to lift heavy. This is for any of you ladies out there who fear the number on the scale going up.
I have news for you:
You need to lift heavy to put on more muscle and to burn more fat. You need to be more discerning about the amount of cardio you are doing- stop the hour long marathons of running or elliptical use.

You need to officially break up with your scale!

You need to learn to accept that when you lift heavier, and eat healthier, and cut cardio (which may be the most difficult thing for us to unlearn) - that the scale may go up.
And it's OK.

You are not alone- I was nervous when my weight went up. At my smallest, before I learned to lift properly and eat well, I was hovering at 110.

It was difficult to accept the fact that when I lifted heavier weight, on a regular basis of 5 days a week with a well developed plan, and limited my cardio, along with eating 5-6 meals a day, that the numbers on the bathroom were going to go up. Eating more, not less, actually made my metabolism speed up and helped in fat loss.

The only thing that allowed me to trust the process was the fact that my body fat was going lower, and my clothes were fitting looser. I was defying everything I had learned from women's magazines and stopped being a"Cardio Queen." I stopped trusting in only the number on the scale, and began trusting the way my body looked.

I hope this picture helps convince you of the difference between being what some may call "skinny fat" on the left- I was focusing on my weight at the time, and not muscle growth, and it shows. The picture on the right I am actually 10 pounds  heavier, but my body fat is substantially lower.
For reference, the date for the picture on the left is Nov. 10, 2011. The one on the right is from Nov. 4, 2012 - exactly a year's difference with a whole new eating and lifting plan.

Checking your own body fat can be confusing, and sometimes expensive. You can measure your own body fat in the comfor of your home, safely and accurately, and at a not-so-bad price.

I use the Accumeasure pinch caliper and measuring tape, below, along with the Omron BIA fat loss monitor on both myself and clients. I have been using these tools for other 3 years now, and still swear by them.


1 comment:

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Hi! I 'm Karlene Murphy. A lover of food (especially if it's gluten and dairy free!), getting outdoors, lifting weights, travel, writing, and snuggling with my two puppies. My addictions include chocolate, coffee, cookies, and sharing my love of being HAPPY and HEALTHY! My passion is educating others - whether at my full time job as a high school Psychology teacher, or with YOU my readers. I have been in the fitness wold for almost 10 years, and currently am an Online Fitness Coach, Fitness Instructor, Pilates and Yoga and Aerial Yoga Instructor in Southern New Hampshire. Contact Me if you need help with designing your own fitness and nutrition program.

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