The definition of "sexy" has changed enough that girls who can hold their own at the gym have become appealing. (Think: ABS-CBN actress Coleen Garcia or UFC superstar Ronda Rousey.) However, it can be undeniably intimidating to ask such a strong woman out on a date. Three words: Get over it.
Kay Bunagan, a co-founding psychologist at Better Steps Psychology, Inc., says the strong female type is still essentially like every other woman. Like any regular person, she still needs the company and the emotional support a partner can provide. There are however a few differences.
"Dating a muscular woman could be just like dating any other woman, except perhaps in certain respects. Some qualities that may be found in them are focus and discipline, conscientiousness, and a mindset of being more conscious about health and fitness," says Bunagan.
Aside from having physical strength, they are also more likely to be strong-willed and tenacious.
"They suggest a certain tenacity that may be required for someone to maintain a lifestyle conducive to a developing a fit body. It requires effort and determination to build these kinds of bodies," she explains.
That might be a source of intimidation for some men. Can you keep up with an active lifestyle such as hers? Relationships work when you and a girl share a compatible mindset. However, it can't be helped that some of us simply aren't as attracted to pursuing a lifestyle that involves religiously going to the gym or watching what we eat. If you like someone who's a hardcore fitness buff, the question is how much can you tweak your own personality to jive with hers better?
The issue isn't completely a black-and-white matter though. Bunagan debunks claims that the strong-woman can't ever be compatible with less active gents because of their body-building character and willpower. She says, "A sensitive guy may be able to provide a balance to a muscular woman's more steely determination. It would be an interesting match."
Asked how a guy should approach a muscular woman, the relationship expert recommends the important first step: "It would be an advantage if men are able to approach her with confidence and without getting intimidated, regardless of their own body type and level of fitness." After the initial approach, it becomes a question of whether both parties are willing to adjust to the other's personality—as in any relationship.
Adjustment, for the male in this case, involves imbibing parts of her personality. In other words, get off your ass, get healthy, and start pursuing a fitter body. It's a positive move, anyway. If her active lifestyle rubs on you, that can't be such a bad thing, right?
What workout can you try? To help you get started, we asked coach Froilan Dioso, celebrity trainer and founder at Froilan Dioso Fitnesscience, for some tips.
His suggestion: high intensity interval training (HIIT). The trainer swears by this type of workout as far as burning fats and transforming your body are concerned.
"[HIIT] ang nagbibigay ng heavy stimulus sa muscles to produce muscle hypertrophy o pagpapalaki ng muscle," he explains. It involves doing a set of exercises multiple times, moving on from one exercise to another as quick as you can.
A sample "menu" may go like this:
For Front Muscles:
1) Chest press using barbell or dumbbells
2) Shoulder press using barbell or dumbbells
For Back Muscles:
1) Lat pulldowns
1) Leg press
2) Leg extensions
3) Squats with barbell or dumbells
For Biceps and Triceps:
1) Curls using barbell or dumbbells
"Make sure na may rest period. Every other day lang ang exercise. For example, today, for front muscles lang ang exercise tapos bukas pahinga muna then the next day, back muscles naman," he advises.
Build up your own confidence at the gym, and bridge the fitness gap between the two of you. That should give you the fortitude to man up and ask her out.
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