How to Avoid Bulking Up

I want to lose weight but I don’t want to bulk up. I hear that, and I’m sure you do to, from many women that strength train. I even hear it from some men.

Now for arguments sake, let’s just say that this is a valid concern (so we’ll totally ignore for the time being that in order to bulk up you must eat a lot, and I mean a lot of food, and that it is relatively difficult for women to “bulk” up anyway).

So how should females (and males) train so that the risk of bulking up is minimal?

Easy. There are 2 ways to modify a woman’s workout so that she need not fear the bulk.

1) Reduce the volume of weight training.

Do only one work set instead of 3. So if it says 3 sets of 8, do only 1 set of 8. This will still put your body in some turbulence, allowing you to burn calories during and after exercise, as well as improving your strength and bone mineral density.

Gaining mass is a function of intensity and volume. So if a woman reduces the volume, but keeps the intensity, she will get all the strength benefits and a lot of the metabolism boosting benefits without the paranoia of getting bulky.

2) Train your clients with more bodyweight exercises.

And I’m not just talking about lunges. There are many bodyweight exercises that will help women lose fat and get lean so that they put and keep the curves in all the right places.

Lunges, split squats, pushups, decline pushups, mountain climbers, inverted rows, assisted chinups, single-leg squats, 1-leg deadlifts, and many, many more.

And of course, throughout all of this, make sure that your nutrition matches your goals.

Get your free sample workout to burn belly fat, flatten your stomach, and work your six-pack abs at:

Craig Ballantyne is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist and writes for Men’s Health and Oxygen magazines and will help you burn fat without long, slow cardio sessions or fancy equipment.

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