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  • The Myth of Female Muscle and Women’s Bodybuilding

    By Travis Steffen on Monday, July 6, 2009in Female  

    Is this what you see when you picture a female bodybuilder?

    Is this what you see when you picture a female bodybuilder?

    I’d like to clear up one of the common misconceptions surrounding women’s bodybuilding and the development of female muscle. First I must state that it is safe to assume that any post written by this blogger about bodybuilding or any other sport for that matter, always refers to natural, drug free athletics and competitions.

    For many people, the mention of female bodybuilding invokes images of juiced up, square jawed, wig wearing Lou Ferrigno look alikes with a set of double D implants as their only claim left to femininity. While there certainly are female bodybuilders that fit that description, it should be noted that it does not exist in the sport of natural female bodybuilding. In fact, without the use of substances like anabolic steroids and synthetic growth hormone, it is biologically impossible.

    Bodybuilding is defined as “the process of developing the musculature of the body through specific types of physical exercise, such as weightlifting, especially for competitive exhibition” or “the application of training sciences to enhance musculature and physical appearance”. Whether or not you would consider yourself a female bodybuilder is irrelevant. Theoretically if you have ever been on a workout routine to build muscle , lose fat and change body composition with the goal of enhancing your appearance, you have been on a type of bodybuilding program.

    A large majority of the women I have trained have been under the impression that if they lift weights, especially heavy weights on a regular basis they will get big, bulky and masculine. I cannot stress enough how completely false this is! Without the use of performance enhancing drugs and synthetic hormones like testosterone, it is in fact impossible. It simply won’t happen.

    Testosterone is a steroid hormone responsible for muscle growth among other things. In men, the largest amount of testosterone is produced by the testes. Women also produce a very small amount of testosterone in the ovaries but it is a minuscule amount in comparison to men. Without a sufficient amount of testosterone, it is physically impossible to get bulky and masculine, even for those of us that “build muscle really easily”. I am one of those women that does build muscle fairly easily in comparison to others. Thankfully my parents supplied me with good genetics and a mesomorph body type, but even so after 10 years of lifting heavy weights 4 or 5 times a week, I am nowhere near big, bulky or manly. I’m still a girly girl, I’m just a strong, firm bodied, ‘go heavy or go home’ girly girl.

    My point is that female muscle shouldn’t be feared. You should not feel limited to doing only the “workouts for women” routines your find online. The sport of women’s natural bodybuilding should be revered and respected for the discipline, desire, drive and dedication that is required to be successful in the sport.

    Whether or not you decide to compete in natural female bodybuilding, the training can do wonders for your physique. The benefits of following a bodybuilding program are plentiful, including an increased metabolic rate, maintenance of bone density, decreased risk of heart disease, slowing the aging process, improved athletic performance and last but very far from least …. a better sex life.

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    About Travis
    Travis Steffen is a Master Trainer and founder of WorkoutBOX. After years of experience training professional athletes and thousands of others just like you, he knows exactly what it takes to get you in serious shape. Follow his expert guidance and you're guaranteed to get amazing results.
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