We all know men and women are different in many ways, physically and behaviorally. These differences have evolved over time to make us the perfect complement to one another. They help us work well together, highlight one another’s strengths, and make us appreciate each other more than if we were all the same. We are unique as individuals and rather unique as two separate sexes on top of that. We are equally bizarre to one another and this can drive us a little crazy at times.
These dissimilarities apply to fitness too. Men and women should not expect to do the same workouts with the same results. It is natural to vary, built into our genes even. So, if the guy who runs next to you each morning seems to be losing more weight, don’t sweat it. Or if the girl in tai chi can bend, twist, and move in ways you can’t even follow, don’t worry. That doesn’t mean you can’t learn a thing or two from the opposite sex.
Goals: Men usually are looking to bulk up, build muscle, compete, and sometimes lose weight. Women are more interested in looking better, losing some pesky weight, and sometimes toning up. These different goals lead to different workouts and strategies.
Physical: Women are slightly shorter and weigh less than men on average. They have less muscle mass and favor their lower body in workouts. Where women shine physically is with flexibility and ultra-endurance. Since women’s metabolism relies more on fat, women can often outdo men in the crazy, ultra competitions. Men are less flexible, but build muscle more quickly. They also favor upper body.
Women shouldn’t feel bad that men lose weight and build muscle faster. It is thanks to the hormones and natural muscle mass they have. That doesn’t mean working out isn’t worthwhile. It does some good things for you, even when you aren’t seeing results as quickly as you would like. Results come slowly for women, but they do come.
Workouts: Women go for more cardio along with some strength training. They like workouts that combine mind and body, like yoga and tai chi. Women are also more likely to seek advice for their workouts. Men tend to go it alone or with a small group of other men. They also tend to head straight for the weights. This is where both could learn a lot from one another.
Men, don’t be afraid to ask for help and advice. Men tend to overexert themselves and do damage. Also, men could take a few courses from women about having fun while working out. Go to a cardio class and enjoy how much fun can come from not just pushing weights around.
Women, try some weights and more strength training. You may not be able to pick up the same barbells as the huge men in the gym, but you may surprise yourself. Women can usually do quite a bit more than they initially think. By building up a little more muscle, your metabolism speeds up and you can finally lose the weight you may be looking to get rid of.
Neither sex seems to look at the health aspects of working out as much as the appearance. This is somewhere both can improve. Working out is good for us. It improves circulation, increases the efficient use of oxygen, aids the body’s natural detoxification processes, and builds bone density. Working out often can stave off diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and more. These are just a few reasons to exercise. Your body craves it, and the health behind working out should be a part of why you do.
The gap between men and women has narrowed recently as women push themselves harder and men begin to take things like yoga more seriously. There will always be some separation, but that isn’t a bad thing. Just tailor your workouts for your needs and your sex, add a dose of ideas from the opposite sex, and take yourself to a new level of fitness and health.Learn more about Charlie PulsipherGroup picture source: marcos_bh Male model picture source: RRRuslan