New Rules of Lifting for Women Review: Part 1

Good morning and happy Friday! Wheee!

I told Shane about all of your birthday wishes, and he appreciated each one of them. Ya’ll are too kind 😀

So last night after class got out, I decided to be an extra good wifey and get the husband one more gift…a trip to our favorite ice cream shoppe! I got him the ushe – Island Treat Chunky. This is both of our faves, and includes pineapple, banana, coconut, strawberry, chocolate, plus who knows what else. AKA, it’s a foodgasm in an ice cream cup.


I wasn’t feeling up to the island treatness, but still wanted dessert. So I emptied a plain Oikos cup into a bowl…

IMG_2075 Added agave nectar, unsweetened coconut flakes, cocoa nibs, and frozen strawberries…


And had myself a decadent and healthy (!) dessert:



And from here, we just turned it into family-dessert night. Any time there’s an empty Oikos cup, Niko’s at my heels for dessert, too. I guess you can relate to it like when you find the bottom of an almond jar. Except for Niko, I add “her peanut butter”

IMG_2076 IMG_2077 IMG_2078  And she goes to town:

IMG_2083 IMG_2085

LOL!! I love it. She looooves oikos and peanut butter. Sometimes I’ll mush up a piece of a banana and swirl it in the mix too. She gets SO funny when she’s eating her dessert – she’ll pretty much bite your arm off if you try and take her Oikos.    

New Rules of Lifting for Women

Review: Part 1


If you remember, a while back when I signed up to start taking classes to become a personal trainer, I bought a weight lifting book I’d been wanting to read.

Well, I’ve been reading it slowly but surely, and New Rules of Lifting for Women has definitely both reinforced my method of weight lifting and has made me doubt some of its suggestions. I do, however, find it fascinating, and can’t wait to keep reading.

I wanted to do two reviews for this book, as it’s kind of split of into two parts. The first part is the back ground and informational section, and the second part is basically the workouts the book wants you to follow. Before I do that, just to be safe, is to reiterate that I am not a registered dietician or sports medicine doctor of any kind.

Today I want to review the first section.


New Rules of Lifting for Women – Part 1 – the good, the bad, and the Not-for-Me

As far as working out goes, the book’s premise is basically that women need to be lifting heavier weights, doing fewer reps, and easing up on the cardio. It goes further into detail by listing and explaining rules for each tip/suggestion. Below are some of the rules I most agree with and support:

Rule: The purpose of lifting weights is to build muscle. I agree with this whole heartedly. I’ve discussed on the blog before how I hate the words “toning” and “shaping.” I hate that women are afraid to “bulk up” (another term I hate.) Women don’t have enough testosterone to bulk up like men do. Believe me, I actually try to build muscle and it’s hard! Do you know how long it takes to build one pound of muscle? It’s not easy peasy.

Rule: A muscle’s pump is not the same as a muscle’s growth – inflammation, swelling, temporary. I think my muscles make me seksay, so after I get done lifting, I’m usually super pumped (pun intended) at the sight of my muscle’s “pump.” Conversely, some women are afraid of this pump, again, thinking it’s “bulk” and will stop lifting. However, the size your muscles are after lifting won’t be the size they are tomorrow. The muscle pump is usually just inflammation and fluid surrounding the muscle and is only temporary.

Rule: More meals are better than fewer. I like this rule, and have followed it for ages. This one is more relative to the individual than the others, however, in my experience, it keeps me from eating everything in sight come meal time. If I have a mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack, it keeps my hunger in check and stable, and provides energy for me all day long.

I also like how the book emphasizes that intervals take you on the fast track to weight loss. I like to do intervals, or HIIT once or twice a week to really get my heart rate pumping, and to keep my body guessing.

Now for some of the rules I wasn’t so fond of.

Rule: Endurance exercise is an option, not a necessity for fatloss. The book explains that one doesn’t need to have any endurance exercise in their program for losing weight. Ok, fine. However, I know that I will always try to incorporate at least one day of endurance training into a client’s workout program. Intervals and HIIT are great as I said above, but anaerobic cardio is very hard on the body, and in my opinion, shouldn’t be done more than twice or three times (at most) a week. You have to throw in some endurance or “steady-state” cardio in there somewhere. Besides, especially for exercise noobs, if someone doesn’t like getting up to their anaerobic threshold (it can be scary being that breathless!!) does that mean they shouldn’t do any cardio at all? My answer would be no, and that steady state cardio, such as light jogging or brisk walking is great for weight loss. Calories in calories out (which this book doesn’t like either, but that’s another topic.)

Rule: Protein is the queen of macronutrients. Yes, protein is great for you, but do we really need 2 grams of protein for every 2.2 kg of body weight? Really?! The book even goes on to counteract the studies that show Americans are already getting more protein that even an elite athlete needs by comparing your need of protein to your need of income. It says something along the lines of saying… that since we need basic things to survive – food, clothes, water shelter, wouldn’t we be happier if we had more than that? It says that these things are necessary, but more and better things are even better! And then they’re comparing that to protein, saying if x amount is “necessary” wouldn’t we want to get as much of it as we can? At least to me, that seems like a very far-fetched comparison. They’re basically saying that more is better and much more is even better still. I’m not buying it.

The meal plans. If you’re a regular reader, you should know how I feel about processed food by now – I’m all for clean eating, and strive to have a mainly clean diet. First of all, the book is all about the protein powder. Whey to be exact (naturally, since protein is queen or something?) Don’t get me wrong; I’m not saying protein isn’t good for you after working out, but they recommend several shakes a day; pre-work out shake, post work-out shake, whenever you’re feeling hungry shake, slim fast shake, smoothie shake, and so on. Then they go on to give meal plans – all of which are very high in protein. Now, I don’t want to discredit the meal plans totally – they do give some examples of very nutritious foods, such as, steel cut oats, almonds, ricotta cheese, etc. However, it’s still extremely protein-laden. Protein is great – and necessary, but again, it’s a little excessive.

Overall, I really enjoy reading this book, and there are many more things that I like about it than what I don’t. I have learned some very beneficial factoids about strength-training so far, and I’m definitely excited to move on to the “workouts” portion of the book. I’ve heard great things about the NROLFW workouts. So far, I know the authors designed a workout catering to the more functional exercises of everyday life. I’m all for this! I love it!

For my review of the second half, I plan on doing all of the exercises, in the manner they suggest (though I probably won’t do them for the specified time, so I won’t necessarily be reviewing the results I got with their xx month plan or anything.)


Gotta go get ready for this Friday at work! Man, this work week went by fast! Did it for anyone else? I have a jam-packed weekend – shopping for shower presents, baking and bunco ensues today/tonight – good thing these are all super fun activities, eh? 😉 Have a great day!!


Have any of you followed the work out plan in this book?

Have you ever followed any workout plan and diet plan in a book? (think South Beach, You! on a diet, Atkins, etc…)


15 Responses

  1. I love Niko; she deserves desserts:-)

    My concentration is walk/running, but I plan to focus way more on intervals in all my workouts. There has been a lot of research on interval training lately, and a PT was on HOI Daybreak talking about it just this morning!

    Thank you for the book review. Pls. keep on keeping us informed:-D

  2. Interesting review! 🙂
    I’ve never really been on a diet like those you mentioned. My diets were all basically just eating less lol Until the whole restricting thing started but that’s for another time.

  3. Great review! That island ice cream sounds SO good.

  4. I did NROL a few months ago and LOVED it…then I got sidetracked by 30 Day Shred and P90X (I’m a sucker for a trendy workout!).

    I’m definitely going to go back to NROL…thanks for the reminder and the review!

  5. First trip to your blog and what great info on weightlifting for women! 🙂 I’m just getting started with working out and I may just have to get that book for information. 🙂

    Have a great day!

  6. Fun family dessert time 😉 Love that you included the puppers. I need to get Franky some dessert sometime! I want to check this book out. Now that I am teaching Pump, I feel the need to know more and more about weight lifting. I agree- more weight! Especially after my pump weekend, it made me really realize what I’m capable of. Couldn’t concur more about the protein. Hope you have a fabulous Friday

  7. I have heard so much about this book lately around the blog circuit. I really appreciate your honest review and love that you weighed the pros and cons. I’m going to have to agree with you on the protein point! Seems excessive!

  8. Great review. It does sound like a good book.
    Sound like the protein argument they make is a bit weak. Yeah, shelter’s great but you only need so much shelter and then you’re using resources needed elsewhere to pay that extra mortgage (that was a clever analogy in my head).

    I started Jillian Micheals’ Making the Cut which I enjoyed but as yet have not made the cut 😉

  9. Thank you for posting your opinions about weight lifting! I’ve weight trained with my parents (who are best friends with protein+weight lifting ) for about 3 years, and i’ve never gotten man muscles. YAY!

    but yeah, tooo much protein without a high high weight lifting regimen is no good. also, ya cant just be packing away those protein shakes without also giving your body whole foods, and lots of veggies. protein alone, especially a high amount is no good. (from what i’ve learned. 🙂

    great review.

  10. Those pics of Niko with that Oikos are too damn cute. Love it. Oikos would be a cute dog name come to think of it!

    I’m not afraid of bulking up, I actually like having lots of muscle but I’m too lazy to lift as much as I should. I need to work on that!

  11. Love the review. Ugh I HATE any diet that involves shakes. I’d much rather eat my calories than drink them!

  12. Interesting review. Thanks!

  13. I completely agree with you on the rules that you don’t like. I’m doing this workout now, and I feel like i’m never going to finish Stage 1!

  14. I did NROLW last year, and wasn’t sure about the protein shakes. At first I thought it was great, but then decided that I preferred eating my protein. I am a person who tries to eat enough protein, maybe a little extra to fuel my activity levels, but don’t really go more than 1g per lb of body weight. I just find that I”m more satisfied when I’m eating just smidge of extra protein. 🙂

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