How to Make a Woman's Body Ripped
Although women typically have significantly lower levels of testosterone and growth hormone, they can still develop significant muscular tone and size by following an appropriate training program. How much muscle a woman is able to build depends on her hormone levels and her body type, the American Council on Exercise notes. Females with a mesomorph body type naturally are more muscular and will see more significant gains, while female ectomorphs, who are naturally leaner, are less likely to put on as much muscle mass.
Strength train four days per week. This training frequency allows you to focus on a smaller group of muscles during each session. Target your back, biceps and legs on Mondays and Thursdays, for example, and your chest, shoulders and triceps on Tuesdays and Fridays.
Choose three to four exercises for each muscle group assigned that day. For example, on chest, shoulders and triceps days, pick three to four exercises for your chest, three to four for your shoulders and three to four for your triceps. High-volume training is key to building significant muscle mass.
Perform each exercise at a volume of three to six sets of six to 12 repetitions each, the training volume recommended by exercise physiologist Helen M. Binkley of the National Strength and Conditioning Association to build muscle size. Rest 30 to 90 seconds between each set and exercise.
Work with an appropriate amount of weight for each exercise. The key to stimulating muscle building is exhausting the tissue during the training session. Therefore, the weight you use should make it difficult to complete the 10th, 11th and 12th repetition of each set. If you’re unable to complete 10 repetitions, choose a lighter weight, and if you’re able to complete 12 or more repetitions with ease, pick a heavier weight for the next set.
Take in enough calories and protein to fuel muscle building. Consume an excess of 250 to 500 calories per day, which would equate to a half to a full pound of muscle mass gained per week, the National Strength and Conditioning Association recommends. Protein intake should be 1.5 to 2.0 grams of protein per kilogram of your weight.
Target the muscle groups that you’re trying to focus on towards the beginning of your training session. For example, if your primary focus is to develop size in your shoulders, complete your shoulder exercises first on chest, shoulders and triceps day.
Discuss your exercise plans with a medical professional before starting an exercise program.
Recruit a spotter when lifting free weights to lower your risk of injury.
- American Council on Exercise: How Women Build Muscle
- National Strength and Conditioning Association: Strength, Size or Power?
- NSCA'S Essentials of Personal Training; National Strength and Conditioning Association
Kim Nunley has been screenwriting and working as an online health and fitness writer since 2005. She’s had multiple short screenplays produced and her feature scripts have placed at the Austin Film Festival. Prior to writing full-time, she worked as a strength coach, athletic coach and college instructor. She holds a master's degree in kinesiology from California State University, Fullerton.