Don’t let an old person move into your body!
The latest scientific research, worldwide, is now showing that strength training (also known as resistance training) is vital for women of all ages because strength training is the only interaction that is shown to stop the degeneration of, and/or replace, bone mineral density. Degeneration of bone mineral density naturally occurs in most women, as they get older, if they do not perform some type of regular strength training.
As we get older we are also at a higher risk of arthritis, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and, of course the dreaded, “middle age spread” (more on that later).
Strength training has not only been proven to increase bone mineral density, it has also been proven to improve heart health and aid in the reduction of blood pressure. Those suffering from arthritis will also benefit from strength training because studies have proven a decrease in the symptoms of arthritis by those who perform strength training at least 30 minutes per week; this is because any resistance type training increases the muscle around joints and takes the pressure off the joints that are affected. Being stronger also means you will have better balance, coordination and mobility.
Strength training would also benefit anyone who has been diagnosed with Diabetes or for anyone who may have a high risk of being diagnosed with adult onset diabetes. This is because, as researchers have indicated, glucose uptake can be increased by 23% after only 4 months of strength training.
How to become a ‘fat-burning’ machine
Between the ages of 20-30 the average person would have lost approximately 5lbs of muscle. As each pound of muscle is responsible for burning approximately 50 calories per day, that equates to 250 calories per day that your body is no longer able to burn – this is more commonly referred to as ‘middle age spread’ and does not need to happen!
By introducing as little as 30 minutes of strength training per week into your life, you will be able to replace lost muscle tissue and increase your metabolism (energy expenditure); this means a faster metabolism, faster fat burning and less chance of getting fat!
One myth I would like to dispel – resistance training and strength exercises do not make women bigger! The vast majority of women do not have sufficient quantities of testosterone (the ‘growth hormone’) in their bodies to produce the increase in size associated with ‘body builders’ – instead of getting larger muscles, women get tighter muscles and a more toned appearance.
To let you in on a little secret – one gram of fat is almost twice the size of one gram of muscle; so if you have a choice (and you do), would you prefer to have more muscle or more fat?
Muscle is smooth, lean, hard and small – fat is lumpy, flabby, soft and big! So lift weights for your bones, your muscles and your waistline.
Sonja Falvo is the Body Transformation Specialist at Real Body Enterprises and has helped thousands of people to get the body they have always dreamed of. Author of two books; The Real Body Plan and The Real Body Real Food Plan (available from http://www.realbodyclub.com/shop) and highly regarded public speaker, Sonja can show you how easy it is to lose weight without dieting, giving up your favourite foods or spending endless hours in the gym. Sonja has developed a realistic, easy to follow healthy lifestyle and weight-loss program for real people; find out more by subscribing to http://www.realbodyclub.com/members/newslettersignup.asp