Member Comments for the Article:

Toning vs. Bulking Up: The Real Facts

5 Myths and Truths about Strength Training

24 Comments



  • I have been doing strength training now 8 months, and have NOT bulked up, but I am so much stronger, and KNOW IT! At 70, I now have muscle to spare. Thank you Eric and Mel at Quality Strength in Tucson , Arizona! We live STRONG!!! - 12/1/2014 9:00:28 PM
  • very good article..I do want to bulk up. I am training to build serious muscles. - 10/13/2014 12:10:39 AM
  • FREENINJA
    The key point, for me personally, is 'with a calorie-controlled diet' it is good to lift heavy weights. When I do not restrict calories and lift heavy (even eating 'clean', as recommended), I get huge for a woman (and yes, I have been jokingly referred to as the Incredible Hulk). I am a short mesomorph, so any additional weight is noticeable, and especially muscle weight. I love lifting heavy weights, and am extremely competitive (also prior military), but I honestly find that a restricted calorie diet combined with HIIT, body-weight exercises and pilates/yoga is the best for achieving the type of body I want (lean, strong, but considered 'thin' and no longer 'huge'). I think this article has some good points, but tends to be confusing to the ones like me. - 9/22/2014 12:35:55 PM
  • This was a wonderful article, thank you. I've been reading about muscle building a lot lately; although this isn't exactly what I was looking for, it was at least the most clear & concise information I've seen on the subject so far. - 7/21/2014 2:18:31 PM
  • RMTROLLINGER
    I was hoping someone could help me out...I have a LOT of muscle and I want to be lean. I used to be 5'4" at 107 lbs. Now I'm at 112, and there's way to much vascularity all over my body. I used to run and do yoga and weights a few days a week. And then my IT band started throbbing. So I joined a gym. I was using the elliptical and the recumbent bike and the rowing machine, and I started lifting often (heavy weights) and the veins started coming to the surface, legs and arms. I put on around 5 lbs. with "good" fats, avocados, full-fat yogurt , almonds, olive oil, etc. and the veins are still there. I think it was all muscle. I've cut my workouts in half and I don't do any more weights. I just don't know how to decrease the muscle. I want a lean body, not an athletes body.
    Thanks,
    R - 7/10/2014 9:10:10 PM
  • good information - Thanks - 6/18/2014 6:27:55 AM
  • Thank you very much! The usage of ALL Of these terms makes me batty! Lift a weight that is challenging. If you don't have a lot of time, lift more weight for fewer reps. If you have more time, lift a little lighter for more reps. You will benefit, regardless. - 6/13/2014 11:42:33 AM
  • Very timely as I just posted a blog yesterday that is hinting at a similar idea. - 6/13/2014 6:27:21 AM
  • SCEK500
    I agree with a lot of this article's content and I think it is great that women are into lifting weights. I do, however, disagree on the comment that men are not that much stronger than women. Men on average have 40 to 60 percent more upper body strength and 25 percent more lower body strength. I do not know if the personal trainer is basing this opinion on her clients or everyday observation.
    She may be referring to untrained men and women of nearly the same height and weight. In this case, the man is only 3 to 7 percent stronger. Women will no doubt put me under heavy fire for posting this, but the difference is significant when both sexes strength train. I am an average man who eats what he wants and strength trains. My bench, squat, and deadlift are over 300 pounds. Most men who strength train can reach numbers in the mid to upper 200s. That is 2 to 2.5 times the weight that women do after 5 years of training. Women are closer to men in strength with dumbbells because they target smaller muscles and works on stabilization. Men are stronger when using barbells because more muscle is activated and women have two thirds the muscle mass of men. Men also have a greater range of motion and apply more force to an exercise.
    Most women will ignore me or try to tear me down since this paragraph is written by a man. This should not dissuade women from lifting. I just think our differences are uncanny. - 5/18/2014 10:56:53 PM
  • CLIPPERCLOP
    if you look at the physiques of say Tom Cruise, Robert.D Junior (Sherlock Holmes), Brad Pitt that's an ideal physique to me. Lean, bit of muscle but not bulky....I hate the body builder look. So, how is that achieved? - 4/12/2014 12:17:02 PM
  • CLIPPERCLOP
    but as soon as I start lifting weights I bulk up especially on biceps,chest and shoulders. So how do i get lean without bulking up? - 4/12/2014 12:14:27 PM
  • Thank you so much for this article. I now understand it. :) - 8/15/2013 2:37:45 PM
  • This article needs to be featured pretty much every day on every fitness site aimed at women. Strength training is so incredibly important for good bone health plus other benefits. Also, if you are like me and enjoy doing cardio (in my case, kickboxing and running) then strength training is even more important - cardio can burn just as much fat as muscle, so that muscle needs to be rebuilt.
    I used to be worried / scared of lifting weights. Once I actually started learning about lifting, I realized I LOVE having muscles.
    I have always been a weakling. It gives me great joy to be able to feel my biceps now. They're still buried under arm fat and loose skin, but I can feel them, darnit!
    I'm a big believer in circuit training, so I can make my time more efficient. I don't need to do separate cardio and strength that way, so it cuts my workout time in half.
    Also, do not be ashamed of your 3 lb free weights. That's what I started out with. Once you are not longer fatigued by them, you can go up to the 5 lb, and repeat on and on. - 8/15/2013 9:47:47 AM
  • I totally agree with the article.
    I have been lifting weight (barbell) for a half year now, and I have muscles that were never there (back and abdomen) but I'm the same size - just more muscular.

    But "toning" with small dumbbells is useful too, especially at the start. Using 4-pound dumbbells and doing crunches made a huge difference compared to being inactive.
    Both physically and mentally. - 8/15/2013 4:12:19 AM
  • I was afraid to look like a body builder. Thanks for the Article. - 5/14/2013 10:37:32 AM

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