Working hard but not getting results you want? Make SURE your program is designed to cause the changes you want!
Are you motivated by a certain body type?
Lean like a runner, muscular like a lifter?
But are you sure your program is targeted to create that type of physique?
If you’re going to put in the work, let’s make sure you’re working smart.
Think of it this way – if you need to travel to a certain place, you board an airplane that’s going to take you to your
destination. It probably wouldn’t work to just go to the airport and get in the longest line because that seems like the popular choice.
But that’s how most people work out. They do what they see other people doing without thinking about the destination.
So if you want to look like a lifter you have to train like a lifter.
If you train like a competitive cyclist eventually you’re going to look like a competitive cyclist.
Sure, your genetics will keep you from looking like another person, but if you’re going to develop your unique body to be one that is good at cycling at some point it’s going to look like it’s good at cycling.
Form follows function.
Our body is engineered to adapt to become better at what
we ask it to do repeatedly.
This is the SAID principle. SAID stands for…
Specific refers to choosing science-based activities that are proven to work.
Adaptation to – be very clear on what adaptation you want to cause.
Imposed – perform the activity consistently over a set time frame.
Demands – perform the activity properly safely and with sufficient intensity to cause the desired adaptation.
In other words, work hard enough to make the changes happen.
If how you train and how you eat isn’t in-sync with your long term goal, you won’t get there.
Your training needs to replicate the activity that you want to be able to do or improve. Or it needs to be designed to cause the physical adaptation that you want to see happen.
The idea is to work towards that ideal physique that you want.
So do you want to look like somebody who is a hiker, or a cyclist, or a power lifter, or swimmer, or a dancer…?
As straightforward as this sounds, a lot of people aren’t doing it. They’re doing random programs that aren’t designed to get them where they want to go.
If you want to look like a lifter but train like an endurance athlete, you’re bound to become frustrated with your lack of progress.
I get it. The myth out there is that you have to do a ton of cardio for fat loss. But you don’t. (Check out Does LIFTING Burn Fat?)
So let’s talk about how to create your version of a lifter’s physique.
To achieve a toned, lean, strong body, you have to build muscle.
To build muscle, you have to lift in a way that is safe, but you also need to push yourself a little bit from week to week by adding reps, sets, or weight. (Watch How Heavy Should BEGINNERS Lift? to learn more about how to do that.)
Take in enough protein and calories to support the work you’re doing in the gym. That will cause your body to create new muscle.
There’s no need to bulk up with food. You can, but if you eat more than you need, you’ll store excess fat while building muscle.
Instead, keep calories right around your unique maintenance calorie amount that keeps your weight stable.
Most women over 40 who start lifting won’t gain more than a pound or two of muscle a month. That slows down over time as you lift more.
You’ll see changes in your clothes and in the mirror, but not necessarily on the scale. The most common result is a loss of inches before there is a loss of scale weight.
At some point, you do need to go into a fat loss phase so that you can start to see the results of your work in the gym.
It’s a really good idea to set aside a long period of time for
muscle building because it takes a long time to build muscle
and then alternate fat loss phases with muscle building phases.
In other words, train to be awesome and you’ll start to see
awesome in the mirror!
Know you need to change, but aren't sure where to start? I created this free training to answer the most common questions women have asked me over the years.
- What to eat?
- Why lift?
- How to stick with it?
- How to get started?
Hi! I'm Tammy! I was a busy, stressed, and unhealthy teacher until I decided to take control of my health. I did not become an athlete until I was in my 50's!
I earned personal training and fitness nutrition certifications, then retired from teaching to dedicate my work life to fitness education for other busy women over 40.
My results are obviously not typical because most people don't train to compete as a bodybuilder.
But I believe everyone can make positive changes with healthy habits! Each of us has a unique combination of strengths and challenges that need to be considered to customize a program that will work for us. Science-based principles, flexibility, and consistency make all the difference.