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FATHINSN SparkPoints: (81,015)
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6/22/11 8:35 P

When the doctor gave the advice to my mom, she was having problem with conceiving another child (after two kids, I wonder why she wanted more) and she had this inverted womb (according to the doctor and a mid-wife who tried to massage my mom's womb back to normal). Maybe my mom had a special case and the doctor cautioned her not to do heavy works but didn't explain much further - usually we have to ask more or the doctors will only tell us the barest info and when my mom was younger, she didn't like to ask more.

I think it also depends on our posture, how we lift things, whether it's during exercises or daily tasks. I carry about 3kgs every morning, from the car to my office and I feel fine, either a handbag at one shoulder and a shopping bag that carry my food on the other shoulder or sometimes I put both bags on one shoulder when I'm in a hurry. But last Friday, when I forgot to bring a shopping bag to a grocery store, I had to carry 2 packet of total 3kg cat food, holding them on my forearm, hugging them to my body and for several days I had aches on my upper arms and shoulders and the pain was more noticeable whenever I stretched my arms upwards.

BRITOMART Posts: 8,332
6/22/11 4:44 P

I wonder if part of the 'origin story' for that wives' tale came from men who didn't want their wives to be too strong--too competent or independent. Maybe not, because in MANY cultures, it's the women who do all the lifting.

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (201,106)
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6/22/11 3:21 P


Women are a lot stronger than they give themselves credit for. Just think of the women in some parts of the world who carry these massive containers of water on the top of their heads, just to be able to have clean water. How about the women who work as farmers and have to bring in the harvest ? How about your average urban woman who has to carry their toddler in one arm, the stroller AND groceries in the other while climbing a set of stairs to get into the house.

The fact is, women have done a lot of back breaking work. So, yes, we can handle weights that are heavier than 3 pounds.

Think about this, at some point, your mom had to carry you as a child. Her womb didn't drop because she carried you and you were heavier than a 3 pound weight. Women do carry a child in their womb for 9 months. Jeepers, if we can manage that weight, we can manage anything ! LOL!!!

I'm afraid her doctor scared her. There is no need to be frightened. Lifting a heavy weight will not cause your womb to drop. And yes, you are stronger than you think.

PS - I was curious to see who was considered the strongest woman in the world today and one name turned up a lot, Becca Swanson. According to one website, she holds the record for the woman's bench press i.e. 551 pounds !! Now, as others noted, this is not average. these are highly trained women. However, women can lift heavy weights and not look like men.

Edited by: ARCHIMEDESII at: 6/22/2011 (15:28)
REDSHOES2011 SparkPoints: (0)
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6/22/11 12:41 P

The orginal posters mom probably has these fears usually are based on problems they have had or other women they know..
If we women train our bodies it shouldn't be a issue unless a careless midwife like I had cut nerves.. Then there are operations to keep the womb and bladder sitting in place.. Training muscles when we are young and through life avoids stuff like this happening..

When we don't train weak muscles can open the doors to hernias a real threat especially around the belly button and below the pantie line because of overweight..

However working as a resthome helper sometimes I have encountered women whom are so sick they are unable to wash themself below the belt..

I have seen how women have been utterly butchered from days before modern midwifes living way out in the country.. Some women literally paid with their lifes.. One of the worse cases was the lady we helped (a nurse and I walked her out to the toilet and her pelvic area broke and we both heard it happen).. She died from shock, the nurse and I needed trauma therapy as there wasn't anything we could do besides hold her and call a ambulance and asking them to send a drugs doctor with them asap.. Whom ever delivered her children cut her up and down plus side ways in a +. They obvious forgot to sew her up....


Edited by: REDSHOES2011 at: 6/22/2011 (12:59)
SLYSAM SparkPoints: (43,184)
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6/22/11 12:18 P

It is good to have a few different weights if possible, in the lower body you can probably do more weight. I started with a set of 5 pounds, 8 pounds and 10 pounds and it took awhile for me to outgrow those (well I still use them sometimes). Then I moved to an adjustable set (the cheapest I could find) that can go from 5 to about 25 per dumbbell and now think that may have been a better place to start just because it is one adjustable set that would take longer to outgrown and when I do I can buy more weight plates (I already have). Perhaps if you visit a sports store like "Play it again sports" you can try different weights and find one that feels good but challenging?

Another option is resistance bands. They are small and inexpensive and one band can be used for a variety of resistance depending on how you hold it--they often come in sets of three different strengths. The only problem with bands is you don't know how much your are "lifting" and it can be very satisfying to see your strength increase by a number of weight.

6/21/11 10:14 P

A woman can lift your spirits and that is a LOT of weight!

FATHINSN SparkPoints: (81,015)
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6/21/11 9:48 P

Thanks for all opinions, it was frustrating to completely in the dark whether there's a limit or not, whether lifting heavy weight will affect the woman system as in the old wives tale and the dumbbells that I have currently aren't too challenging for most exercises. I also just weight my handbag, it's actually lesser than my current dumbbell 3lbs, just slightly less than 1kg/2.2lbs so no wonder sometimes. But if total weight of the handbag and a shopping bag that carry my water bottle, lunch and snack, it's 3kg/6.6lbs!

Looks like it's time to get a new pair of dumbbells.

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (201,777)
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6/21/11 9:08 P

sky's the limit...

I can deadlift my bodyweight fairly easily, and I can pick my 6 foot, 200 pound husband off the floor.

I've also had a baby so it goes to show that my uterus and lady parts are fully functional.

BETHANYBOO Posts: 2,039
6/21/11 6:37 P

I've deadlifted 175 lbs several times without my uterus falling out.. lol. Silly old wives tale.

JESSY3035 Posts: 359
6/21/11 6:36 P

I can do two sets of 15 with 10 pounds weights. I always say Mind over Matter. Meaning if you think you can do it, you can. One day I went with my mother to Sears because I was wanting to see how much weight I could lift. Alot of jobs recommend a person to be able to 50 pounds so I wanted to see if I could. It was a little hard, but I could lift 50 pounds. My mother was amazed.

6/21/11 6:21 P

I was figuring it was a wives tale as well, or I think we would have all been warned, LOL.

SLYSAM SparkPoints: (43,184)
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6/21/11 6:02 P

I imagine you are probably ready for dumb bells larger than three pounds now. A good question to ask yourself is how heavy is your purse? Whatever weight that is--and you carry that around on your shoulder for hours is possibly a good starting weight (or even lighter than you should use for some exercises). You see a some women who exercise with three pound weights and carry 20 pounds or more around all day. The light dumbbells are probably good for some exercises i.e. some shoulder exercises but probably not heavy enough for your stronger muscles in your upper body. :-)

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
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6/21/11 5:52 P


As your body adapts to the chosen weight, you should find that you can increase this amount over time. As to how long that will take varies amongst us all. The most important factor is using good form.


6/21/11 5:44 P

I think what your mother was referring to was uterine prolapse, which mainly happens as women age. Having strong kegels and abdominals probably would help rather than hurt. Also, a hysterectomy is not the only option once we get old; I don't want to get into the nitty gritty, but in mild to moderate cases there are plenty of options prior to hysterectomy. I would discuss this with your ob-gyn if you want an actual medical opinion as opposed to my informed-but-not-expert one. From what I know about prolapse, lifting heavy loads doesn't have much to do with it.

Edited by: DEN_HAVFRUE at: 6/21/2011 (17:46)
FATHINSN SparkPoints: (81,015)
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6/21/11 5:37 P

I've lots of "word of caution" from my mom when I started get more consistent with my exercises. Even jumping rope got her to tell me, my womb will get more endangered!

Anyhow, as long as I use the perfect, correct posture, lifting up much, much heavier weight should be no problem, right? So, if I'm not mistaken, that means, my maximum weight will keep increasing when I'm getting stronger. I'm aiming for 10 kg for now as that's the heaviest grocery item (rice) that I have to carry :D

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
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6/21/11 5:28 P

Hi Faith,

Your womb will not fall out. This is a very old wives tale. In fact, women should be lifting weights--an activity many of us don't do. As to how much will vary from person to person and whether or not they have any underlying medical issues (hypertension being one).

The standard in the industry for a healthy person is to lift 80-85% of your one rep max. What this means is if you can lift 10 pounds only once with good form, you should be lifting 8 to 8.5 pounds 8-12 reps (with good form). If you can lift more than 12 reps you may want to up the your weight.

I hope this helps!

BECCADION Posts: 410
6/21/11 5:26 P

Um, no, that seems more than a little extreme when you consider women carrying their children, for one thing. How much does a typical toddler weigh? What about women in African countries carrying water in jugs on their heads? Water is HEAVY. They must have excellent core strength. I really wouldn't worry about it as long as you work yourself up gradually.

(One possible explanation to what your mom heard about could maybe be a prolapsed uterus, unless a preexisting condition would have nothing to do with a healthy woman lifting weights)

Edited by: BECCADION at: 6/21/2011 (17:30)
6/21/11 5:25 P

There's no official number; it's relative to each woman. If you wanted to, you could become a female power lifter - those ladies lift more weight than a lot of guys can! We're talking HUNDREDS of pounds.

Your womb will not slide out if you pick up heavy weights. Just work up to it and train safe. It's not bad for a woman to be strong - quite the opposite. Just make sure you lift with good form and train smart. If you work your way up to really heavy weights, make sure you use a spotter so you don't get hurt.

FATHINSN SparkPoints: (81,015)
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6/21/11 5:18 P

I was complaining to my mom about my aches at my upper arms after carrying 3kgs of cat food when she gave me advice not to carry too heavy load to protect my womb or as she said it "your womb might starts to fall, slide out and there will be no other option but remove it!". Apparently, her doctor cautioned her to not lift up heavy things to protect her reproductive system and she also heard about this one lady who had to remove her uterus because it really came out (sorry, people, this might sounds a bit gross).

So, my question: How do we know what's the maximum weight that we women can lift up, carry or use for strength training and daily tasks? I don't want to stuck forever to my 3lbs dumbbells. I plan to buy much heavier dumbbells as now the pair that I have are getting easy to lift up.

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