Like a girl

“You run like a girl.”

“You throw like a girl.”

“You jump like a girl.”

How many times have we heard these phrases muttered? From the playground to professional sporting events, we continue to insult people by saying they do things like a girl.

But why is doing something “like a girl” a bad thing? Why are we still perpetuating the idea that girls are less capable than boys?

Title IX was passed in 1972 and ruled that no person can be excluded from any educational program or program that receives federal funding based on sex. With this, came the creation of more women’s sports team—something that previous women could only dream of.

A year later, Billie Jean King, 29, beat Bobby Riggs, 55 in the “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match. She played tennis like a girl and won.

But “like a girl” has become so engrained in our minds as a negative thing and for some reason, females don’t see it as degrading. I would be lying if I said I never said some professional athlete “threw like a girl” when he messed up and got some laughs without realizing what I was really doing. I was perpetuating a stereotype and letting down the women before me who fought for a girl’s right to even throw a ball.

But I know that “like a girl” isn’t a bad thing. Just look at the title of my blog. I run like a girl doesn’t mean I run slow or wrong. It means that I run and I’m powerful.

Always recently came out with a commercial, #likeagirl, which really struck a chord with me. I hadn’t realized until watching it what we have done by making little jokes about doing something like a girl until I saw young girls believing the stereotype.

The video is moving and will get you to rethink saying “like a girl” in bad light again. You can watch it here.

So I encourage everyone to only use “like a girl” for good. When you accomplish something great, say you did it like a girl. We should all be proud of our bodies and what we can do with them. “Like a girl” isn’t bad. “Like a girl” is what we do. 

Why women should lift weights

I can’t count how many times I’ve heard a fellow female say, “I’m not lifting weights..I don’t want to look like a man.” And to be honest, I’m sure my 17 year old self muttered the same phrase when my Dad told me I should start lifting. But the reality is, lifting won’t make you look like a man- and it actually has some great health benefits for women specifically.

1. Lifting weights actually burns more fat. How? When you lift weights your body actually burns calories after your leave the gym. 

2. Lifting builds muscle. That doesn’t mean you are going to look manly. You are going to look toned and more lean, more so than just sticking to cardio.

3. You’ll get stronger. This means you’ll be able to do more things and see your muscles grow. It can be so satisfying to start to be able to use heaver weights as you get stronger. It’s a tangible measure of how you are improving.

4. It increases bone mass. Osteoporosis is more common in women and lifting weights has been proven to increase bone mass in women.

5. Lifting is good for your heart. The American Heart Association found that those who lift weights have a lower risk of suffering from heart disease. Other studies show that those who lift have lower resting heart rates which is another great benefit.

These are only some of the many benefits that women can have from incorporating strength training into their workout plan. You don’t necessarily have to include weights in all of your workouts but maybe start with one or two days a week. There are many resources that can provide you with tutorials on the proper way to lift as well as provide you with some exercises to get started. You should start with lighter weights and then increase as you get stronger.

And don’t be intimidated if the free weight section of the gym is full of guys. Do your thing and get stronger! Your body will thank you!