International Women’s Day (IWD) started 114 years ago as an annual day for women to “press for their demands.”
Today, women around the world face significant obstacles to their health. We focus in on one in particular: the gender gap in physical activity.
why do women tend to get less exercise than men?
Women need to work out, too
You’ve heard of the gender pay gap, but did you know there’s a gender exercise gap, too? That’s right, research shows that women around the world are less physically active than men.
Indeed, among some married couples, women frequently do more than their fair share of household work than men, even when both spouses have a “real” job. They also tend to have less expendable income. Both of which can get in the way of exercising.
As individuals, there’s only so much we can do to close the gender exercise gap. For example, we can’t snap our fingers to expand access to child care to make more time for a trip to the gym. But there are steps we can take to make exercise more accessible in our own lives. every little bit of movement counts!
Some actionable movement tips:
Split it up so you have three 10-minute bouts of exercise a day.
Fit in some physical activity during your lunch break.
Make it a family affair: Go for a group walk after dinner or do a family dance-off.
Do it at home: No need to go to a gym or take a class.
which parts of your body should you focus on strengthening?
that doesn’t mean we should only focus on one area.
I think a good mix of exercises is key.
Lastly, don’t forget about your diet. It’s important that women get enough calories while training. Optimizing nutrition for exercise is ineffective without enough energy to fuel basic functioning.
If you’re hitting the gym hard, prioritize iron, vitamin D, and calcium, which female athletes are often deficient in, plus loading your diet with nutrient-dense foods.