Here is an article showing scientifically that women need to work heavy weights in order to build muscle. Something I have been saying all along. Women need to work heavy weights just like men to see any real gains in LBM. The higher the LBM the lower the BF% and the more metabolically active your body is. So put down the little pink weights unless you are a complete beginner and start really working those muscles.
Pump it Up to Build Muscle
(Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Women who want to build muscle during weight training need to include a heavy loading cycle in their workouts.
That's the key finding from new research led by investigators from the University of Connecticut who explored the role of growth hormone in building muscle and bone.
"We found that growth hormone was responsive to moderate and heavy exercise regimens having 3-12 repetitions with varying weight loading," reports the lead author of the study, William J. Kraemer, Ph.D. "Women need to have heavy loading cycle or workout in their resistance training routines, as it helps to build muscle and bone."
The researchers explain women rely more heavily on growth hormone to build muscle than men, who mainly build muscle via the male hormone testosterone. But not all growth hormone is created equally. Produced in the pituitary gland, growth hormone is composed of 191 different amino acids that can break apart and rearrange themselves into smaller and larger pieces.
This study showed the presence of growth hormone varied with the workout program and also varied according to the test the researchers used to detect it. Specifically, larger-sized growth hormone types were more prevalent when women engaged in heavy resistance training.
The study was carried out among women who participated in either upper body training or total body training. The two groups were further divided into those engaging in heavier weight training with fewer repetitions and those engaging in lighter weight training with more repetitions.
This article was reported by Ivanhoe.com, who offers Medical Alerts by e-mail every day of the week. To subscribe, go to: http://www.ivanhoe.com/newsalert/.
SOURCE: American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2006;291:E1177–E1187