How Joining Sports Clubs and an Active Lifestyle is Empowering Women
Society places an enormous amount of pressure on women to look a certain way. Many times this expectation is completely unrealistic, but with magazines and social media inundating us with images of flawless (and airbrushed) fitness models, it leaves even the most dedicated gym bunny a little depressed.
There is a very unhealthy stigma attached to women’s bodies and exercise, and in media, we are constantly faced with headlines aimed at women such as “fix”, “tone” or “lose”, which only increases anxiety, lowers self-esteem and creates unrealistic expectations from a very early age.
Having a healthy and active lifestyle should be focused more on women feeling great about themselves, rather than focusing on society’s airy-fairy views of what women should look like. Here at Tweak, we believe fitness IS about empowering women. As empowered women, we need to feel more confident about our bodies, to love who we are and to respect ourselves more. Our brand ethos is based on empowering women through exercise. And we are not talking about specific fat loss programs or weight training programs, we are talking about the mental escape that exercise allows us to have. That one hour a day gives you an opportunity to feel strong, confident, independent, and liberated! That to us is far more significant than striving for the perfect body that does not exist.
Our bodies are designed to move, so it is important to find the right workouts for you. Being active should be challenging but should also inspire you to become a better version of yourself.
Sports clubs, gyms or any fitness environment can be daunting when you haven’t been to one in ages, but gyms are not only where you go to sweat and cry. They are social hubs where you can have the opportunity to meet lifelong friends. You could even find your best workout buddy there or a partner (heart eyes)! Feeling empowered starts with taking risks! And so get yourself a gorgeous little gym outfit that makes you feel sexy and inspired to go work out!
It is important to ensure you have workout journal with your exercise routines already jotted down. Know exactly what it is you will be doing every week so that you can jump straight in before your nerves get the better of you. We have listed a few of our favourite confidence boosting workouts below. Try them all and see which one becomes your number one choice:
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training):
HIIT is badass. It is tough. And is one of our favourite forms of cardio. HIIT is designed to keep your heart racing, sweat dripping, and your body pushing to the ultimate limit. It isn’t for the faint-hearted, but we guarantee, after you are done, you will feel rejuvenated and ready to take on the world! You can find loads of examples of HIIT on Pinterest for example. Have fun picking out your favourite HIIT’s and get bouncing!
Weight Training: There is still a huge misconception that the big boy weights are for men only, and that women should only ever train with mini pink dumbbells. But ladies, let me tell you, that is no longer how things work!
There is nothing more empowering for a woman than lifting heavy weights and proving to yourself just how strong you are. Squats, deadlifts, clean and jerks * are fabulous exercises that will push you to the max mentally and physically.
Weight training takes time, so don’t go in all gung-ho as you will land up injuring yourself. Take your time, build up your strength and confidence, and ensure always that your form is 100 percent correct.
Women who lift are admired by everyone, so don’t be intimidated by the testosterone or heavy weights…. own it girl!
* Please make sure that before you embark on a weight-training program that you have a qualified trainer show you exactly how to lift safely and correctly.
Body-Weight Conditioning Training: Using your own body is extremely empowering when exercising. Strength and conditioning starts with using your whole body through primary functional movements: pulling, pushing, hinging and squatting.
Examples of exercises to perfect are chin-ups (pulling movement that promotes strength in the arms, shoulder girdle, upper back and core), press-ups (pushing movement that promotes strength in the arms, shoulder girdle, back and core), and planks.
Yoga is a wonderful form of body-weight conditioning too. Empowerment for women doesn’t necessarily mean pushing your body to its limits with intense workouts. Sometimes your body may need a more holistic approach such as yoga or meditation.
Yoga is all about strengthening your mind-body connection, so it’s the perfect way to gain a better understanding of your body. The Yoga practice teaches us how to listen to our bodies and to find peace in movement.
To conclude, at the end of the day, whatever exercise you choose to do, when you look fabulous, you feel fabulous. Looking great and feeling great is our end goal right? Sure, but we feel it is equally as important for women to set a positive example for others about what being a strong woman really means.
So are you ready to be inspired? Are you ready to feel empowered? We know we are, so see you at the gym!