Every one is an athlete. So, you can burn fat like one! Even if you don’t make a living as a female athlete, your body can still train with the intensity that athletes train with.
Speed and explosive strength training are the same for both females and males. While males do have more physical strength than females, the same biomechanical motions are used by both sexes. So, females need to train the same way as males while allowing for differences in gender make-up.
And women shouldn’t worry about getting too bulky! You would have to lift very heavy weights for a long time to get bulky.
Female athletes in speed and power sports are usually very cut and lean because most of their exercises are done with intervals at full speed.
Short bursts are proven fat burners and these athletes primarily train this way. We’re talking workouts with major calorie and fat burn.
So, here are 10 tips to help you burn fat like a female athlete:
1. Train your body in all 3 planes of motion. Using strength exercises that require rotations, turning, twisting and side-to-side motions will fit the bill.
Machine-based training concentrates on the sagittal plane (up-down, forward-backward movements). Do miminal training (unless you are rehabbing or a beginner) on machines because they limit your natural movement patterns.
Training in all planes of motion will definitely add intensity and variety to your workouts.
2. Training on your feet will lead you to do more full body exercises that burn more calories and fat.
3. Female athletes have strong, muscular bodies, including the core. Muscle mass and intense workouts helps to keep their metabolisms humming around the clock.
Stabilize and strengthen the core first and limbs (arms and legs) later. This can be done using exercises like bridges, planks, bird dogs, cobras, supermans and back extensions.
You would later progress to full speed core exercises on your feet like medicine ball chops, medicine ball slams, 2-arm and 1-arm medicine ball throws and medicine ball rotational throws.
4. Include many bodyweight and dumbbell exercises in your workouts. This will help you exercise at higher speeds and burn more fat.
You can get to the heavier weights once your joints and muscles are stabilized and balanced. If you can’t do bodyweight squats correctly then you won’t do heavyweight squats correctly.
5. Concentrate on compound (multi-joint) exercises like squats of all types, lunges of all types, bench press, rows, step ups, and deadlifts.
These exercises work major muscle groups and help you build more muscle mass and burn more fat.
6. Improve your muscular balance. This will help you build muscle all over your body.
For instance, your quadriceps shouldn’t be significantly stronger than your hamstrings. Likewise, the frontside of your upper body should have muscular balance with the backside of your upper body.
7. Train your muscles with all contraction types (eccentric, isometric, concentric). All muscles function eccentrically (reduces force or deceleration), isometrically (stabilizes force) and concentrically (produces force).
Eccentric contractions are able to produce the most tension development followed by isometric contractions and lastly, concentric contractions. If eccentric contractions are able to produce the greatest tension development, then more time should be devoted during training for eccentric contractions to reduce the risk of injuries such as knee ACL tears.
Also, strong eccentric contractions are critical for athletes to produce maximal power since all force production (concentric) must be preceded by force reduction (eccentric).
Lowering the bar on bench press 4 seconds (eccentric) and lifting the bar in one second (concentric) would be an example of eccentric contraction training. You could do the same thing with exercises like hamstring curls, shoulder press, rows and squats.
8. Improve your flexibility and correct postural problems in the early stages of your training to avoid injuries when you get to more intense training. You can’t workout if your injured!
9. Progress to more intense exercises like plyometrics (jump training), speed training and full-speed sport specific exercises after you have stabilized and strengthened your core, joints and overall muscle structure.
10. Improve your rate-of-force production (how fast your muscles produce force) and dynamic balance. This will help you burn more fat because you will be able to do more challenging exercises.
Train harder, smarter, safely and burn more fat like a female athlete!
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Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
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2 thoughts on “Burn Fat Like a Female Athlete”
Love tip number 1 – I’ve really been trying to move my clients away from the machines into functional strength no matter what the age. The results that they are starting to show, strengthens the argument, their body shape is changing so much quicker
Hey Dawn! Looks like you’re having fun with fitness…that’s the real key to the whole deal…you won’t stop working out if its fun! Following you on Facebook…thanks for stopping by!