Strength Training should be a part of our regular exercise program at any age but especially as we head into midlife and beyond.
What Exactly Is Strength Training?
Strength training is also known as Resistance or Weight Training and no, you don’t have to be a weight lifter to make this type of training part of your physical activity. In this type of training you make the muscles work against the force of the resistance and in doing so the muscles become stronger and more toned in appearance.
Why Is Strength Training So Important?
- As we age, our bodies become weaker and more susceptible to problems such as Osteoporosis which is a bone degenerative disease.
- Strength training can slow down this process by improving bone density, joint function, increased muscle mass, tendon and ligament strength.
- As it is a form of aerobic work out your heart and lungs will become stronger and you will also lose weight.
- Strength training also improves balance and flexibility as well as strengthening your back for better posture.
How Often Should I Train?
- Adults should do muscle strength training at least two three days per week.
- Strength training can be done at home or at the gym.
- It is recommended that you have a couple of sessions with a personal trainer who can explain the correct way to lift weights without injury.
- You can easily do this type of training at home and you don’t need expensive gym equipment – even your own body weight can be used.
What Type of Weights Do I Need?
There are different types of weights which can be used in your training.
- You own body weight can be used to perform squats, planks and push ups
- Dumbbells or free weights
- A Medicine Ball can be used in various weights
- Resistance Bands – these are an easy and affordable way to train. They are easy to use and provide resistance when you stretch them.
- Weight machines – these are used in gyms and use weights or hydralics
How Heavy Should The Weights Be?
Start with 2kg free weights – DON’T TRY TO LIFT TOO MUCH TOO SOON
In my next post I’ll be introducing some basic weight training to start you on your way to stronger bones, better posture and a healthier life.