Have you noticed that women at the gym often steer clear of the weights section and often stick to treadmills and ellipticals? There are many myths and misconceptions about working out that prevent women from maximizing how they exercise and use gym equipment, thereby having a negative effect on achieving fitness goals.

Ladies, let’s fact-check your knowledge about exercise. We’re here to set the record straight with these 5 common training myths for women.

Myth 1: Weight Lifting Makes Women Look Bulky and Masculine

woman lifting weights

The high level of estrogen in women prevents muscles from bulking up


Truth: Lifting weights, also known as strength training, helps you get stronger, not make you look masculine.

Testosterone is what causes men’s muscles to bulk up. Since women have lower testosterone levels, strength training will not make women look like bodybuilders. In fact, it tones muscles and slims down the fat in the arms.

Myth 2: You Can Target Certain Areas to Lose Fat

woman in gym with weights

Exercise reduces overall fat, not just in certain areas


Truth: Spot-training fatty areas does not slim them down. What spot training does is strengthen and tone specific areas of the body.

Fat congregates in specific areas of the body, and where these areas are depend on age, genetic makeup, and gender. During exercise and fitness training, overall body fat is reduced, not just in your target areas. That’s why some women become frustrated when their “problem areas” don’t get resolved with spot-training exercises.

Myth 3: Women and Men Should Train Differently

woman using gym equipment

Training intensity relies on needs, not gender


Truth: The training intensity of a woman should depend on her physical needs and goals. If she needs to build strength and endurance, she can have a program that involves weights, overhead presses, and intensive cardio without worry. Training intensity and exercise regimens are based on needs and goals, not on gender.

Myth 4: Women Are Only in the Gym to Lose Weight

Woman lifting weights

Women go to the gym for various reasons


Truth: The media have given women in fitness centers a certain image—that women only join gyms to lose weight. In reality, women’s reasons for joining the gym vary as much as the men’s. Some women go to the gym to get healthier, get stronger, and yes, get slimmer. Some go to the gym at the instruction of their doctors or in preparation of a marathon. Each person has their own personal wellness goals – it isn’t always about weight loss.  

Myth 5: One Workout Plan Works for Every Woman

Trainer with woman lifting weights

Women need a training program that syncs with their fitness goals


Truth: No one workout program will work for all women, all the time. Exercise isn’t a one-size-fits-all endeavor. This is most especially true with women doing sports training, or those with specialized needs or goals. In fact, a combination of strength training, cardio, and endurance training is the best way to get that balanced physique and ideal fitness for any gender.

Wellness is a state of being, for both the body and the mind. For more fitness tips, visit our Facebook page.

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