Having been a long-distance runner for nearly all of my life, it has surprised me how little respect cardio gets these days. Trust me, I love my cardio...but there are some downsides to cardio that can't be avoided. While it has always been a great stress reliever in many ways in my life, research also shows that is creates lots of oxidative stress (which makes us age faster) and can be tough on the joints. And I wouldn't want to forget that it also tends to be less effective as a fat loss tool for most of us than lifting weights. Why weights?
Getting in resistance training can reduce overall body fat by 3 percent in 10 weeks because you get a greater calorie-burn for your buck. A study in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that women who did an hour of strength training burned about 100 calories more the day after their workout, something called "the Afterburn effect" than they did when they didn't lift weights. That results in about four to five pounds of fat burned per year for women who lift weights three times a week!
Strength Training is like the Miracle Movement for the Body...
It Preserves Muscle. You can counteract the inevitable loss of muscle loss with aging through strength training. This helps us sustain a more functional and enjoyable life beyond 70.
It Controls Body Weight. Strength training regularly helps you reduce body fat and burn calories more efficiently...which means you get more calorie burn during and after the workout than with steady state moderate cardio sessions.
It Hardens Your Bones. Because of hormonal changes we experience with age, we all naturally lose bone density- women more than men which puts them at increased risk for developing osteoporosis. Routinely lifting weights slows bone deterioration and can help your bones grow stronger, maintain strength, and reduce your chance of developing osteoporosis or slow down its effects.
It Decreases Risk of Injuries. When you strengthen your muscles you increase your balance and coordination, which become increasingly important to help maintain your independence as you age.
It can improve Cardiovascular and Metabolic Systems: Glucose metabolism become more effective and insulin sensitivity is improved, and resistance training has been shown to lower blood pressure in persons with pre-hypertension.
THE BOTTOM LINE....
It raises your energy and mood: Multiple studies have shown large reductions in depression in those who strength train regularly and, in fact, a strength training only intervention has resulted in the largest improvements in chronic fatigue. As you strengthen the body...your confidence goes up!
Think of exercise like medicine. It is one of the best things you can do for your body! If you are looking for a "Reset Button" for your life...strength training is likely the medicine you need. It truly can restore your energy, vibrancy, and confidence. Start with 2 days per week with 4-8 exercises. Complete 2-4 sets of 8-12 exercises making sure you are using good form with the exercises you choose.
**Would you like to know more about how you can get an exercise program of your own? Reach out and we will hook you up!!**