MUSCLE MATTERS WITH PCOS - (Part 2) Top 3 Strength Training Guides - PCOS Diva

MUSCLE MATTERS WITH PCOS – (Part 2) Top 3 Strength Training Guides

Hope you all had a wonderful summer.  It is hard to believe it has come to an end.  But I welcome  Labor Day because for me it is a  sort of “New Year’s” – a time to reflect on where I am and where I want to be on my PCOS journey.   The kids are back in school, the seasons are beginning to change as fall is in the air in New Hampshire –  it is a great time to recommit to my PCOS plan. 

I have to admit I did get a bit sidetracked with my food plan this summer, as sugar has sneaked back into my diet, so I  need to get back to menu planning and  Clean Eating .  But I am happy to say, I made it to the gym quite regularly this summer, often with 3 kids in tow.  And I have focused on strength training.  With my boys back in school, I also hope to have a bit of free time to catch up on my blog, Facebook & Twitter posts. 

Just realized I still need to post the follow-up to my last article about “Muscle Matters with PCOS“.   If you haven’t read  about how building muscle mass can help with insulin resistance please take a look.  Hopefully you are sold on the importance of strength training for women with PCOS and are ready to give it a whirl. 

If you have never worked out with weights before you are probably asking, where do I begin?  Well, you could always hire a personal trainer.  But if you are like me, personal trainers may not be in your budget.  I have been able to lose over 50 pounds of postpartum weight  by using these 3 resources:


1. OXYGEN Magazine

I have written many times about  Clean Eating Magazine and Tosca Reno’s Eat Clean Diet Books . I think they are perfect resources for  developing a PCOS food plan.  Well, OXYGEN Magazine (also published by Robert Kennedy) is the  perfect exercise companion, as the magazine also advocates Clean Eating and Tosca Reno is a contributor.  At first, when you pick up this monthly magazine, it may seem a bit intimidating because of all the ripped women in the advertisements.  But I assure you, this magazine is really a must for boththe avid gym girl as well as the beginner.   I rip out the exercise routines and put them in a 3-ring binder.  When I go to the gym, I take a routine out of the binder and I am good to go!  

2. The Women’s Health BIG BOOK OF EXERCISES

This is my go to guide for exercises.  Many of 619 strength training exercises in this book require little more than a pair of dumbbells.  I take this book with me to the gym and select an exercise for every major muscle group- glutes, quads, hamstrings, core, upper & lower back, shoulders, triceps, biceps, chest and core.  If I have time I will do 3 sets of 12-15 reps after a 5 minute warm-up on the bike or treadmill.  I always try to leave at least 5 minutes to stretch and cool down.

  3. Jillian Michaels Videos

  If you follow my facebook and tweets, you’ll know how much I love Jillian Michaels books – especially Master Your Metabolism.  She really is right on about managing your hormones in order to lose weight – this really resonates if you have PCOS.  Her workout videos are terrific because she relies on “circuits” which keep your heart rate up while you build muscle.  When I can’t get to the gym, I’ll watch one of her segments on Exercise TV or pop in one of her DVD’s.  I have rented several on Netflix and then I purchased my favorites.  I love the 30 Day Shred!

Take a few minutes to jot down some ways you are going to recommit to a healthy lifestyle.  With these easy to use resources why not add Strength Training to that list!

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  1. I was thrilled to find your blog and have even recommended it to friends who don’t have pcos but just want to improve their health. I’ve been diagnosed for about 10 yrs but really have not been treated. I currently do not have health insurance as I was laid off from my job. I am trying to control my pcos as much as I can on my own. My frustration is, and I’m wondering if any one else has struggled as I am, I have been exercising an hour a day, sticking to a 1500 calorie pcos friendly diet, and have not lost a pound! I have been at this almost 2 months. I am starting to get Extremely discouraged. I know losing weight for a pcos woman can be a slow process but i’ve never had this much trouble. Am I missing something?

    1. Did you check your carb intake? maybe too many fruits, they are rich in glucose? giving up gluten may help. Maybe you have to give up dairy too. Even the “good” carbs can be very bad, like wheat bread. Check the Grain Brain website, I have found it quite helpful and informative.

  2. Hi Emily,

    I’m the same! Its so frustating! I started exercising 7 weeks ago, i do and exercise dvd 5 times a week and have lost 22 inches but put on 2kgs!! Its so annoying doing everything you’re supposed to to be healthy but none of it working!

  3. After finding out that I have PCOS, I was devestated. My husband and I have always wanted kids. After searching google blogs I stumbled upon yours. My negative attitude had just started to turn around and I have recently started working out. Finding your blog was such a blessing. It is SO ENCOURAGING! Thank you for taking something that made me feel less woman-ly and turning it into a life-changing experience for me!

  4. Muscle is heavier than fat but it’s leaner so while you will lose inches don’t be suprised if you put on a few kgs. It’s a good sign and muscle will burn fat long after you’ve developed it.