Physical conditioning is about strength, stamina and aesthetics, but it also impacts overall health and self-esteem. The following information represents a comprehensive plan of attack for the serious female fitness enthusiast. It covers an array of topics ranging from the fundamentals of nutrition and training, to the complexities of appropriate supplementation and steroid administration. Designed as both an informative and instructional tool, this work represents the highest quality and latest data available from a variety of nutritional experts, bodybuilding, fitness & figure competition winners, and experienced licensed personal trainers. Safety is always of paramount importance, thus it is strongly recommended that you consult a physician before beginning any of the dietary supplementation or exercise regimens that follow.
Within the hierarchy of fitness (SEE: above pyramid) there are three primary elements. Diet appears at the base because of its foundational importance to the whole of fitness, reaffirming the age old axiom "You are what you eat". A diet goes, so goes health and the body. In the center we find weight training, an activity that provides the necessary stimulus for muscular change. Weight training is a greater, or more impacting component than cardiovascular (aerobic) work because when properly employed it literally becomes a part of the body via increased muscle density and mass. Since muscle requires more fuel (calories) for operation, lifting weights can transform the body into a round-the-clock calorie burning machine, enhancing its ability to process foods, mobilize stored fat, and function better. Atop the pyramid sits cardio training, which is great for improving heart health and endurance, but considered more of a polish or icing with regard to aesthetics as it only burns calories (and when internal conditions are right, fat) during, and for a very short time after the activity. Unfortunately, and for reasons to be discussed later, women tend to focus more on the top of the Fitness Pyramid spending numerous hours a week performing cardio activities. Can you imagine a person trying to meet all of their daily nutritional requirements through vitamin supplementation? Well vitamins and supplements are to diet, what cardio is to fitness…complimentary. As illustrated by the arrows, the components of the pyramid exhibit a reciprocal relationship. This means that when diet is well managed, less weight lifting and cardio required. Similarly, better balance within the first two areas reduces the need for cardio work. However, the inverse is just as true in that a sloppy diet and/or lackluster weight training necessitates more cardio output.