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This Instagram star saw her body transform when she swapped cardio for weights

This fitness influencer proves that doing weight training doesn't make you "manly".

Rebecca Catherine Smith, who has more than 102k followers on Instagram, has posted a series of before-and-after shots that show just how dramatically her body has changed from lifting weights. 

Before weights, Rebecca said she’d often “spend hours on cardio machines” in an attempt to lose weight “never saw results”, and admits that she had an unhealthy relationship with food.

She's come a long way since then, and the side-by-side pictures show how switching long runs and a restrictive diet for weights and a big appetite transformed her body.

©Instagram - @rebeccafitness_eats

We love that Rebecca isn't afraid to challenge the notion that women should not lift weights, for fear of over developing their muscles and becoming "manly".

“It infuriates me how still so many girls think the second you pick up a dumbbell or protein shake you’ll suddenly become the hulk,” Smith wrote in her Instagram post. “changing my training from cardio to weights changed me completely inside & out... I personally don’t think I’ve made my body look at all manly in my past year and a bit of weight training!"

©Instagram - @rebeccafitness_eats

The influencer is now a proud advocate of weight training, and listed three reasons why girls should start lifting weights in her post:

 

1. Building strength & muscles:  "Lifting builds on a woman's natural curves and helps your body be the strongest it can. Ripped abs, sexy strong back, shoulder boulders & a curvy behind all come from lifting "

2. Losing extra body fat: "My body fat % saw a MASSIVE fall when I began lifting because as your muscle mass INCREASES your metabolism INCREASES. Before I would spend hours on cardio machines thinking that will get rid of fat but never saw any results and just made me HATE going to the gym, and if you feel like you're in that boat then change it up now!"

3. Healthy relationship with food & body image: "When you're doing cardio in order to burn 'calories' it's so easy to look at food as numbers and end up feeling guilty for eating too much and feeling like you HAVE to restrict yourself to see results, well that's just not the case at all. Starting weight training made me realize food is fuel and I need LOTS of it to get the best out of my training... the amount I eat has honestly trebled since I picked up lifting and I absolutely love it ... there's no restricting and there's no guilt in indulging in treats once in a while because what better way to fuel a sesh"

The post has since had 16k likes, and comments of encouragement and admiration from all over the world.

 

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