Will Lifting Weights Lead to Bulking?

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Author: Alyson Kaufman

Society’s standard of beauty has made great strides within the last year. Women who once perceived a single body type as acceptable and feminine are now embracing curves, strength, and muscles. But despite the models we choose to Like and follow on Instagram, Renee Zecharia, a personal trainer in Brooklyn, NY says that women are still afraid lifting weights will lead to bulking.

“I have a lot of clients that have that concern,” says Zecharia. “[But] women don’t have the same [testosterone levels] in their bodies as the men have, so when the men try to bulk up, it’s much easier for them. For a woman to actually bulk up, she has to work like for years and years. It would take her almost a lifetime to get very bulky and she’s got to go very, very heavy. She’s got to build it up.”

Zecharia admits that it’s not impossible for a woman to bulk, but in order for it to happen, a woman would need to work twice as hard as any man because our bodies don’t naturally tend to grow that way. “I don’t think [women] should be lifting 100-pound weights like the men do,” she says. “If it’s extremely challenging, they’re very heavy, and she does it on a regular basis, then there’s a chance she’ll bulk up.”

Okay, so it is possible but, ladies, that doesn’t mean you should steer clear of the weight room. “It’s important for a woman to work with weights and to strengthen their muscles,” Zecharia says. “As we get older, if you’re not working out at all, then our muscles slowly deteriorate. It’s important to keep them strong.” According to The American College of Sports Medicine, weight training also reduces women’s risk of osteoporosis, heart disease, and increases metabolism.

From the way we see it, it’s like drinking water: it is completely possible to drink too much and drown yourself, but that won’t happen unless you’re specifically drinking an insane amount as a dare or fraternity haze. You wouldn’t let that slim, unlikely chance keep you from drinking water because avoiding it altogether would be detrimental to your health.

So don’t worry, ladies. Unless you’re specifically working toward becoming a body builder, you’re not going to bulk like a man. Pick up those dumbbells and sculpt those arms because strength is vital, and muscles are sexy.

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