“Weight training makes girls bulky and masculine”... does it really?

January 11, 2018
Cecilia Harris
It makes me want to punch a hole in the wall when woman (or men) say “Weight training makes girls bulky and masculine”. Allow me to assure you.



You know those women bodybuilders who look really bulky? They eat, train, and sometimes take supplements specifically so they can look like that! They’ve probably been working towards that goal for years and years.

Here’s the truth. When you pick up heavy things, your muscles get stronger (but not necessarily bigger). If you pump yourself full of testosterone and eat way more calories than you’re burning every day; you will get bigger. If you pick up heavy things, and eat a caloric deficit (and eat the right kinds of food), your muscles will get stronger and denser; you will burn the fat on top of your muscle and you will get that “toned” look that you’re after.

Here’s how it works. Picking up light weights for 20+ repetition builds muscular endurance; it does not build tight, dense, strong muscle.

So, want to look damn good AND be strong? Pick up heavy weights. And continuously look to improve how much you do pick up as you get stronger. Dr Paul quotes that resistance training is arguably the healthiest thing you can do for a human body.


There are loooaaddss of reasons why but Dr.Paul gave me 10 of his favourites and I totally agree. Here they are:

1) Simply better health

Studies after studies have demonstrated the importance of strength training for lowering triglycerides (fatty acids), blood pressure, resting heart rate and insulin sensitivity. On top of all that, resistance training has been shown to improve cognitive functioning (improved brain function ladies all ages. It can also impact things that we may think would be untreated like women suffering with PCOS. Resistance training really is the goddess of health for us ladies.

2) Reduced cancer risk

While the evidence is less specific on the benefits of weight training on cancer risk, exercise in general is known to lower the risk of certain cancers via its effect on the immune system [1]. For example, women that exercise for 30-60 per day decrease their risk of breast cancer by 20-30%. So, protect your breasts and exercise!

3) A better nights sleep

Exercise and in particular RESISTANCE type training has been shown in research soooo much that it has a positive impact on sleeping. The better we sleep the better we generally function all round. Not just mentally but physically. The better we sleep the less likely we are to also overeat. There's more detail on this in one of my previous blogs on Beauty Sleep

4) Increased energy

Of course working out will tire your body at the time. But due to the hormones produced when doing weight training and sometimes an impact on testosterone levels, you are more likely to gain more energy. This combined with better sleep should be a good mixture for improving your energy. As long as you have the correct balance.

5) More muscle mass

As our hormones fluctuate and oestrogen levels eventually drop our muscle mass tends to deteriorate as we get older. But basic weight training and putting a gradual force through our muscles forces them to react by laying down stronger tissues and keeping them solid and strong. So if you're the clumsy one then resistance training is associated with better balance so (hopefully) you'll stop tripping and falling over stuff.

6) Slow down and possibly reverse loss of bone density

So...bone density does naturally decrease as we get older. It's usually because we produce less Oestrogen that build our bone structure. Don't worry though this tends to happen when you're in your mid 60's +. But research is clear that by placing a force through the bones, it can still force them to react in a positive impact even when you're in 70's and 80's. Just by doing some resistance training.

7) Increased metabolic rate

We know that muscle is metabolically active tissue, and that it's not fat. this means that to maintain this tissue your body is burning energy (calories) simply to maintain the lean muscle mass. This means the more lean tissue you have, the more calories you will be using up, just simply for them being there - nice! Perhaps this is the reason why lean people find it easier to stay lean.

8) Improved hormonal balance

As ladies we all have that scare of menopause. If you haven't gone through it already. Basically oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone all decline when we go through it. Unfortunately they don't always do so proportionately, leaving a lot of us women in strange states of hormonal imbalance. Crying, hot flushes, and a whole load of mixed emotions. Strength training can help re-balance hormones by stimulating testosterone production and increasing the amount of progesterone available to offset the dominant effects of oestrogen, via it's stress-reducing effects.

9) Enhanced self-confidence and improved body image

It has become a popular thing amongst us girls that looking leaner is the "ideal" body image. Weight training will create this effect perhaps more than any style of training. We know exercise in general has a very positive effect on self confidence and self image. I know for a fact when I exercise regularly I feel better and more confident in myself.

10) Increased sex drive!

I'm guessing none of us want to lose our sex drives, am I right? Hence why Results with Lucy is offering an amazing Gym Plan - solely for this reason! Ok, not really. But you will find that the more strength training you do you'll notice the multiple impacts on testosterone levels, sleep, energy levels and self confidence. Just imagine the great sex you'll have 🙊🙈

So don't knock down resistance training and try our Gym Plan out now! It's an amazing 3 phase plan and each of them lasts for 12 weeks. You can use the gym version or a home version but on BOTH versions we give you guidance on how to progress across the 12 weeks and introduce new exercises. So, no excuses girls - you CAN do this. We've got your back. It’s a plan for those who want to try something different and learn more about technique. You can purchase it here within our store!


👉🏽 CLICK HERE to sign up to your Results with Lucy membership! 👈🏽



1] http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2012/11/30/exercise-protects-immune-system.aspx

Cecilia Harris
Founder & Head PT

Cecilia is the co-founder of Results with Lucy and face of Results with Cecilia.

Sign up to our newsletters

Marketing by
Releated Articles
  • Laura September 17, 2019

    I always wondered if I would get bulky from lifting heavier weights! Now I know the facts I will be ordering myself a heavier set!

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing