“I don’t want to get big or bulky, that’s why I don’t lift heavy weights” is what I hear from so many women at the gym. They have pictures of female bodybuilders who resemble men in their mind and are absolutely terrified of adding some kilos to the weight stack. So they pick up a 2 kilo dumbbell and do endless reps or run for hours on the treadmill. But: WOMEN NEED TO LIFT HEAVY IN ORDER TO GAIN MUSCLE and get rid off those wobbly arms!
Maybe the trainer at the gym already told you and you haven’t believed him or maybe this is actually news to you. But girls, pleeeeeeease trust me: There is NO WAY you will ever look like this ever! I promise faithfully. If you train daily, eat very consciously and are genetically fortunate (my grandfather had a six-pack at the age of 70!) you may at most look like me.
HOW COMES FEMALE BODYBUILDERS LOOK THAT WAY AND I DON’T? There is a male hormone called testosterone that is important for sexual and reproductive development. It is that androgen which is responsible for the large muscle mass increase. An adult men’s testosterone levels are around 200-1200 ng/dl, women also produce testosterone in their ovaries, but only small quantities of about 15-70 ng/dl which means that in average, men have 17 times more testosterone than women. It’s simple genetics that females cannot build up huge muscle mountains so female bodybuilders use exogenous testosterone injections and/or other anabolic steroids to bypass the normal laws of nature.
Messing with nature comes at a high price. I have seen girls transforming into men myself and I think it’s absolutely scary. Of course it depends on the dosage but testosterone can have some fairly serious side effects in the short run that may be permanent if the course continues.
- Increased libido
- Redistribution of body fat
- Cessation of ovulation and menstruation
- Increased sweat and changes in body odor
- Prominence of veins and courser skin
- Alterations in blood lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides)
- Increased red blood cell count
- Deepening of the voice
- Growth of facial and body hair
- Male pattern baldness
- Enlargement of the clitoris
- Possible shrinking and/or softening of breasts (which is often due to changes in fat distribution)