Will lifting weights make me bulky?

 

The most common question we get from women is “will lifting weights get me bulky?”

 

While there are a lot of ways to answer this the short and easy answer is “no”…

 

The longer more involved answer is “probably not”…

 

Let’s look a little further.

 

Many times people will see elite-level CrossFit Games Competitors, Weightlifters, Bodybuilders etc. and think “I don’t want to look like that”, the reality is those women spend hours upon hours a day training, dialing in their nutrition, often with the intention of “getting bulkier.”  Even with all of this time and dedication, it’s not an easy or fast process for these women to pack on muscle.

 

Part of this reason would be the differences in testosterone levels between men and women.  Testosterone is a sex hormone produced naturally in the human body, and is responsible for many things such as increase skeletal muscle, bone mass, body hair etc.   This is simply what often makes a male a male.  

 

Women also have testosterone in their bodies…. At about 1/8th the rate of a typical male.  

 

If we consider testosterone to be an essential building block of big muscles, based on the statement above we can almost imagine that women will have 8 times as much difficulty “getting bulky” doing a similar workout regimen.

 

In our facility, we don’t train for size but train for strength and function that will help us to live a better life.

 

Using a personal anecdote I’ve coached predominantly women in the sport of Olympic Weightlifting for years, these athletes lift heavy often and are constantly trying to improve their  Max lifts.  Many of these athletes attain an “athletic/ in shape” physique and have never reached the point of being too bulky.

 

Our typical gym members that are training 4-5 days a week and eats healthy, enjoys a night out on the weekend are doing just a fraction of the work necessary to really increase their muscle mass and become bulky.

in conclusion, unless you’re training extremely hard and often, and hyper focused on getting bulky it’s very unlikely to happen on accident.

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