We all want to feel tough and strong and when we are in the weight room, we are just that. Does lifting heavy to some heavy metal music, with chalk flying everywhere make us BAMFs though (yes I brought that back, you’re welcome Dane Cook)? We identify elite athletes, lifters, models, but there are thousands of badass women who should be recognized. Not for having a six pack or for setting records, but just because they show what a legit lifter is everyday. Here is how you know you’re dealing with a real lifting badass.
1. They Lift for Their Own Goals
Many women workout for their “goals” when in actuality, it is just the idea that a certain size is beautiful. They go without foods they love because they want to fit into a certain dress. Legit female lifters know that working out is about more than just a dress size, and even if that is their goal, they are lifting to reach an appropriate size anyways.
2. They Aren’t Afraid to Admit When Society is Pressing on Them, But They Don’t Relent
It isn’t “real women have curves” but “real women are honest”. There will always be a time where you are concerned with how you look, how you’re perceived, or what you’re currently capable of, but real lifters…real women know that they can admit to those feelings and that doesn’t make them any less of a B.A. They are real people after all. Their greatness comes from not judging themselves on what they currently do, but knowing what they are capable of.
3. They Realize There is Enough “Greatness” to Go Around
And so they encourage others endlessly. They know that someone else’s transformation doesn’t take away from their own, or another person’s PR doesn’t make their weight any less heavy. Encouraging other strong women only makes a real lifter greater, and having a larger community to train with can only make them stronger. A legit female lifter knows this and practices it.
4. They Are Already Past the “Strong is the New Sexy”
While women are still rocking the hashtag and wearing the shirts, these women have known for quite some time that their strength makes them sexy. They aren’t trying to redefine what beauty is, they simply live it. They also are aware that with the trend of female lifters well into its upswing, there is nothing “new” about it.
5. They Believe in the Long Term
Real lifters never set short term goals and expect themselves to be fulfilled. They don’t start to work out in order to lose weight for a wedding in two weeks, they don’t begin a workout plan thinking they will look jacked in 4 weeks. They believe in what will come with consistency and hard work. They believe in a year from now. They believe in the next Open. They believe in their next show. They believe in what will be accomplished in the off-season and what they can achieve during the following season. They believe that they are building habits that will be evident when they are 63 not just 36. They believe in the long term.
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6. They Cheer for Themselves Constantly
Egotistical, proud, arrogant are words that sometime describe a person very well. For great and legit lifters, they don’t worry about seeming proud because they are proud. A badass woman will tell herself everyday that she is strong and great and beautiful. She will tell others that same list. In the face of doubt, whether it be herself or others, she will repeat it. A real woman is her first and best cheerleader. These women know that cheering yourself on is the only way to get where you want to go, and they do it constantly.
7. They Build a Life Around Their Goals
Great lifters don’t make their goals secondary, they construct their lives around those goals. What if lifting is a 2nd or 3rd priority for them? Then they properly build their life to maximize the 1st priority the most, and then so on and so forth. To be a legit lifter, you don’t have to live/breath/eat weights, but you have to approach it the way you would any other priority. Real lifters don’t let their meal prep slack or allow for their schedule to consume their workout times. They pack, plan, and prepare themselves for success day in and day out.
8. They Can Admit When Things Aren’t Working
And are not afraid to start over. While many people never want to risk looking bad, a real badass doesn’t care that you see her trial and error as a failure. She understands that lifting, nutrition, and living a healthy life takes sorting out. She can admit that she didn’t know how to do an exercise, or that her workout routine wasn’t the best. She can admit when she is wrong or that she needs advice. These things don’t make her weak, they make her stronger.
9. They Know Success Has Many Forms
So they never knock your form of success down because it doesn’t seem as great as their own. They also don’t feel the need to push themselves to a certain limit or do specific things to achieve your form of success so that you see her as successful. A real lifter has decided what she is aiming for and has already accepted that at times she will not hit the mark, or she may appear to be off track. She knows that while she is bulking and not a size 2, she is on track for success, whether you see that or not. Additionally, she will never shoot down another person’s very small (to her) goal since she is aware that same goal may feel huge to that individual. Success is a very big mountain with many paths to its summit.
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10. They Don’t Knock Other Forms of Exercise
A real lifter may give her advice on whether something works well or not, but she doesn’t look down on the Zumba goer just because she isn’t lifting weights. A real lifter encourages exercise, period. Whether its Crossfit, yoga, Barre, or the litany of others out there, she is happy that people are sweating.
11. They Know That Their Physique Isn’t for Male Consumption
The pressures we feel from society are often the female projection of male wants. Men are as varied as we are in their passions, but us women project our desire to be desired right back on ourselves. A real woman realized at some point that her body isn’t for a man but for herself. Her physique has many functions, so to dial it down to “what pleases a man” is ridiculous. A strong lifter is building a physique she loves, and knows that her consumer (when she chooses one), will appreciate it just as well.
12. They Don’t Seek Validation, But They Give it Freely
A B.A. chick doesn’t need someone to tell her that she looks strong…she already knows. That doesn’t mean she can’t appreciate a compliment and that is exactly why she dishes them out. People are motivated in so many ways, and a real lifter knows that letting others know that their hard work is evident can be huge. The secret of self validation is one a strong women doesn’t want to keep to herself.
13. They Make No Apologies For How Their Strength Makes Others Feel
For all the women that become jealous of a fit woman’s toned arms or smaller (chiseled) waist, no need to try and bring this fit chick down, she has no care for how you feel as a result of her hard work. A tough lifter cannot help your masculinity if it feels threatened and cannot change your female envy when you see what hard work creates. If you wonder why, check out #6
14. They Don’t Feel the Need to Constantly Show Off or One Up
While they won’t apologize for how you feel, they don’t actively seek to make you feel a certain way either. There are people who are physically strong, but are mentally weak and feel the need to remind others how strong they are by flexing constantly or putting down your PR because they set a higher one. A legit female lifter isn’t just physically capable, but she is emotionally capable of letting others shine and not taking away from their successes. They give their mouths a rest and let their work speak for itself.
15. They Keep Going
No matter what, they never stop. They may rest, may take a break, or change things up, but they are never done being fit and healthy. They know that this is part of their life and so even after bad days in the gym or a poor performance on a platform, they will always keep going and striving for more.