The Ultimate 5-Day Workout Routine for Women to Get Strong and Toned

Men, it seems, are not the only ones who enjoy lifting weights. Nowadays, you’re just as likely to see women in the gym, squatting, benching, or dead lifting. The ‘Girls that lift’ movement is now very much established, and we think that’s awesome.

Years ago, if you walked into a gym, more often than not, the sight you would be greeted with would be a weight room full of men, and a cardio room full of women. Women were generally advised to stay away from weights as it was wrongly believed that lifting weights would turn them into hulking she-beasts.

As research was conducted, or as common sense began to prevail, people found that lifting weights as a woman would not cause you to add 60 pounds of muscle to our frame overnight. In fact, it was found that resistance training provided a shapelier, curvier, leaner, more defined physique than one which could be attained through cardio alone.

That’s why today, we are going to be looking at a 5 day workout routine for women to get strong or toned.

If you’re a woman who is looking to get bigger, stronger, or more toned, the following routine is perfect

BENCH PRESS

Bench press is an exercise that will tone our chest muscles, giving you a slimmer or perkier appearance. This exercise will actually work our pectoral muscles, the ones located behind the breast tissue that supports the breasts. As bench press works our upper body, it improves our fitness level and improve our posture too. It also increases metabolism, helps in burning more calories which lead to smaller breasts.

Lie flat on a workout bench, keeping our feet flat on the floor. Hold the weights with a sideways overhand grip, extend our arms straight up. Hold for 4-5 seconds. Now slowly lower the weights back down to the starting position. Repeat 12 times for 2 sets.

Bench Press for Breast Reduction

 

WALL PRESS

The only equipment you need for this exercise is a wall. That means you can do it anywhere, anytime. Wall press is just like the conventional push-ups, the only difference is that instead of using the floor you will use a wall here.

Stand two feet away from the wall while facing it. Place your palms on the wall, make sure your fingers are pointing upwards. Now bend our elbows and lean our chest forward to the wall as far as you can go without arching our back. Hold for six seconds or come back to normal position. Repeat 12 times.

 

Training Basics

Compound Movements
  • Bench Press—variations: Incline, Flat, Decline – Grip Widths: Wide, Normal, Close – Equipment: Barbell, Dumbbell, Smith
  • Hammer Machine Press
  • Push Up—variations: Elevate Feet, Elevate Hands, Weighted, Assisted—Plyometrics: Clap, Depth—Hand Placement: Wide, Normal, Close, One Arm – Equipment: Exercise Ball, Core Ball, Medicine Ball
  • Chest Dip—variations: Weighted, Assisted—Equipment: Dip Bar, Bench
  • Medicine Ball Toss
Isolation Movements
  • Fly—variations: Incline, Flat, Decline – Equipment: Dumbbells, cables
  • Cable Crossovers—variations: High, low
  • Pullover—variations: Dumbbell, EZ-Bar, cable
  • Pec Deck Machine
The Ultimate No Fluff Women's Training Guide, Part 4: Chest

Developing Your Training Program

Because the chest muscles are so big, they have to be hit with a variety of exercises and a larger number of sets to fully fatigue the muscle fibers. When developing your program, choose 3-4 compound movements and 1-2 isolation movements to ensure you’re getting ultimate stimulation for growth or strength from our chest workouts.

Because the pec muscles fan out in many directions, you can develop our program to target the pecs by region. Upper and lower chest can be individually targeted. In addition, you can shift the focus on outer or inner pecs, depending on the exercises you choose and how you perform them.

To target the upper chest (sternal head), which is the most visible portion of this muscle on a woman, choose incline movements. Choosing flat bench exercises targets the overall chest, while opting for decline movements hits the lower chest. All areas are important for overall development in strength and size.

The outer chest is important as well. It is very visible in the area that ties in to the front deltoid. This can be targeted with standing flys or a variety of dip exercises.

When properly developed, the inner pecs give that coveted line down the center of the chest. To develop ours, concentrate on peak contraction or squeeze the chest at the top of our pec deck or fly exercises.

Sets And Repetitions

Generally speaking, most people benefit from performing 10-15 repetitions or 2-3 working sets of a particular exercise. This will differ based on our training history, current fitness level, and goals.

Women focusing on maintenance should stick to 2-3 sets of 12-15 repetitions. Individuals aiming for mass gains should perform 5-6 sets of 10-15 repetitions. In order to gain strength, you should perform 4-5 sets of 10-12 repetitions.

You can incorporate one, two, or all three rep ranges into our program for variety. For example, women looking to gain size and strength would do well to alternate the 10-15 or 10 .12 rep ranges every other workout.

Additional Muscles Often Trained With Chest

The muscles of the chest are very large, so some people prefer to train them on their own day. This is a great way to ensure you are hitting the chest muscles fully and completely exhausting them.

Another option is to train chest with shoulders and triceps. Such is the program of a trainee on a push/pull split. The push side of this split places exercises together that require you to push the resistance away from the body on the positive portion of the exercise.

In addition, the shoulder and triceps are hit secondarily in many chest exercises, which makes this split a good choice for the trainee who wants to save time and/or keep the intensity high.

Trainees who have already reached their desired amount of development can condense their workouts as such for maintenance purposes, as the stimulation from less volume is sufficient at that point.

If you like the idea of dedicating chest to its own day, but you lack the time to follow a five or six day split, you can choose to pair chest with biceps. By pairing these two opposing muscle groups, you can train chest completely without sacrificing strength needed to train shoulders or triceps.

The biceps can then get a completely taxing workout as well, since they are not worked secondarily in any chest exercises.

The serratus muscles (boxer’s muscles) are also commonly trained with chest. These are the finger-like muscles underneath the armpit. They are often hit secondarily in movements such as dips, pull-ups, and pullovers, so they can be trained with either back or chest.

The Ultimate No Fluff Women's Training Guide, Part 4: Chest

Diet and Nutrition

It doesn’t matter how hard you are training in the gym, if you aren’t eating the right foods at the right time, all of our efforts will have been in vain. You can’t out-train a bad diet, which is why we’re going to share a few diet and nutritional secrets with you before leaving.

Remember, we’re looking at the ultimate 5-day workout routine for women to get strong or toned, or if you’re not eating right, you will become neither strong, nor toned.

Here are some tried or tested methods proven to give great results

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