CLAIRE, 27, asks: I’ve started lifting weights in the gym after seeing other girls doing it, but I’m worried it will make me look manly and bulky! Will it?
The Colonel says: There is a common misconception that women who lift weights will end up looking like some Amazonian Queen or body builder.
Ladies, don’t panic, it’s simply not true. You can lift weights without turning into the Hulk.
Primarily there are two main reasons you are physically unlikely to become Conan the Barbarian over night; you don’t have the right hormones and your calorie intake isn’t high enough.
Men have higher levels of the hormone, testosterone. Although women do produce it, it’s in much smaller quantities and this is the reason you are less likely to be able to produce muscle mass in the same volume as men.
Secondly, when did you last choose to eat well over your usual amount in order to gain weight? The chances are never, in order to bulk you would have to consume more calories than you burn to “bulk up”, so unless you’re purposely adding supplements to your diet and working out like an Adonis then you will be fine.
There are plenty of reasons to lift weights if you are a woman, aside from improving your strength lifting weights speeds up fat loss and improves health.