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10 Mistakes Women Make in the Gym

4. Working the Abs Like a Powerlifter

I know mistake #1 said to use heavier weights, but ab work is the one exception. For some reason, a lot of women already use heavy weights when working the midsection. Oddly, they think that working the waist with heavy weights is somehow going to make it smaller. Maybe… if we all lived in the Bizarro world. The waist is comprised of muscles and muscles respond to heavy weights by getting bigger. If you want a waist that’s as broad as a tree stump, then have at it. If, however, you want the mythical wasp waist, stop working your abs with heavy weights. As mentioned in the previous tip, stick with weight or resistance that allows you to do roughly 15 to 20 reps. Most importantly, don’t use weights while working your “side muscles,” otherwise known as the obliques. The surest way to build a blocky waist is to do side bends while hanging onto dumbbells. Instead, work your obliques by doing a few sets of side planks a couple of times a week.

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