Importance of Resistance Training
Do you want strong bones?
Do you want to burn more calories?
Do you want help managing your weight?
Do you want to reduce symptoms of chronic conditions?
Do you want to enhance and preserve muscle function at any age?
If the answer is yes to any of these, you should be resistance training.
It's for everyone!
There are multiple ways you can perform resistance training. Bodyweight, resistance bands, free weights, machines/cable apparatuses- all effective and helpful in the long run. Times have shifted and resistance training isn't about who can be the biggest in the gym at any given time. People are starting to understand and promote the true idea of fitness and that's to optimize your body completely. Resistance training, in my opinion, just happens to be the best option.
As we age lean muscle mass naturally diminishes. Resistance training helps preserve and enhance muscle function at any age. Lets go through some of the questions I asked at the top:
1. Strong bones: The stress from the resistance training can help increase bone density and lower your risk of osteoporosis.
2. Managing weight: restistance training can help increase metabolism. When resistance training your body has a tendancy to develop muscle which inherently allows you to burn more calories even after you're done working out. This is known as EPOC (Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption).
3. Managing chronic conditions: By strengthening the muscle, tendons, and ligaments you're giving your body a chance to be used and not atrophy. Having strength, the ability to move freely and independently is extremely valuable. Resistance training can help you manage arthritis, back pain, and lowering risk for things like heart disease.
We understand that resistance training in all its forms can be beneficial. It truly offers our body a lot and is something everyone should have installed into their weekly schedule. As a trainer my main concern is keeping clients safe from injury and on the right track to continuous progress. We shouldn't take certain aspect of training for granted. Lets say an injury occurred, you've immediately been limited on what you can do which undoubtedly limits what type of progress you can make.
Here are a few reminders to help you along the way:
1. Do not forget to warm up. I'm not even talking about stretching. Stretching is good but dynamic movement is better when it comes to warming up. Walking, jump rope, skipping, banded mobility moves, etc. If you take the time to warm your body up appropriately you're doing it a huge favor.
2. Don't forget to breathe. I see this all the time with clients and people around gyms. I'm not sure why people don't do it... but you need to. This is not only in regard to during exercise but even between sets, after cardio, whatever it may be just breathe. You can find a lot of control over your body if you slow down and take realize you can do more. Many times new clients have never had their heart rates elevated to a real working load and it freaks them out. Pause, breathe, regather, back to work.
3. Take your time. I understand sometimes we are real limited on time and you need to rush through a workout because something is better than nothing. I agree, however I have seen far too many injuries occur simply because someone was moving to fast or wasn't focused on being in the right spot.
I truly believe that resistance training can change your quality of life as we all inevitably age.