Why Build Muscle
Building muscle means adding weight. Adding weight makes my scale like me less. It makes my BMI go up, which makes me feel fat. So, I don't want to build muscle, right? WRONG!
Many people neglect building muscle when trying to get fit because they are focused on "losing weight." Please, throw that phrase out of your vocabulary. You might need to lose weight, but it's what kind of weight you need to lose that you should focus on. Do you need to lose muscle weight, also? If not, then say, "losing fat weight, and gaining muscle weight," or "adjusting body composition."
See my articles on BMI vs Body Composition and Idea Body Composition Numbers
Women, especially, tend to avoid muscle building exercises, but they have an additional excuse (I almost typed "reason") for this: Women are afraid to build too much muscle and look too "buff" or like a female bodybuilder.
Talk to female fitness experts, read articles in respected postings, do enough research to make yourself comfortable, but please realize that I have already done this research for you.
Certified fitness coaches (male and a female) and nutritionalists agree that women labor under a myth that if they work out too hard, they will look like a man.
In this article at HealthGuidance.org, Can Women Build Big Muscles? Why Women Can't Build Big Muscles Easily, the author goes on at length about how women should not be afraid of lifting and building muscle. "Ladies! If you are listening, I want to say this loud and clear. There is no way women will build big huge muscles unless you are on special supplementation and specially designed training system."
Chris Chew continues, "This myth is so ingrained in women's psyche that even after explaining the facts to my women clients, they are still afraid to lift weights. So will women who lift weights in their workouts build more muscle tissue? Yes, of course, but it will not be those big huge muscles like those of bodybuilders. Your muscles will just tone your body shape resulting in a tight, firm, healthy, attractive and desirable body. The body shape that is ever so sexy and healthy. Yes, you may have noticed an increase in weight when you step on a scale. This is because muscles weigh more than fat. Thus, as you increase your muscle tissue, your weight will increase but your fats will be reduced giving you a well toned sexy body which most women can only dream of."
How to Build Muscle
Now that we've talked about why building muscle mass is important, let's talk about how to build it.