Why Should You Strength Train?
When clients come to me to start a training program many times I hear “I want to lose weight, tone but not get bulky.” If this is a line you have given your trainer in the past, I hope this post helps you to understand the importance of strength training versus all the negative rap it tends to get. Strength training combined with cardiovascular exercise is the foundation of health-based fitness. Pair that with a balanced diet and you will see the results you’ve been wanting to achieve.
As we age we tend to lose muscle mass; muscle mass carries out a large function for us, so in losing it we are putting our bodies at risk for disease and injury. Strength training increases lean muscle mass, which helps your body burn calories more efficiently and improves your quality of life. Building muscle also helps protect your joints from injury, and stronger muscles help support your joints — this can help you lead a more independent lifestyle as you age.
Benefits of Strength Training
Strength training can even reverse or reduce the severity of chronic health conditions like heart disease and type II diabetes. For example:
- Heart disease. Regular exercise can help improve your heart health. Recent studies have shown that interval training is often tolerated well in people with heart disease, and it can produce significant benefits.
- Diabetes. Regular exercise can help insulin more effectively lower your blood sugar level. Physical activity also can help you control your weight and boost your energy.
- Asthma. Often, exercise can help control the frequency and severity of asthma attacks.
- Back pain. Regular low-impact aerobic activities can increase strength and endurance in your back and improve muscle function. Abdominal and back muscle exercises (core-strengthening exercises) may help reduce symptoms by strengthening the muscles around your spine.
- Arthritis. Exercise can reduce pain, help maintain muscle strength in affected joints and reduce joint stiffness.
If you’re a runner, cyclist, or training for a triathlon, ignoring strength training could mean danger. Athletes that include regular strength training reduce their risk for injury and improve their performance in endurance settings. Muscle strength gives you the ability to avoid injury, and move correctly when your body is under loads of external stress.
The next time you’re debating on getting on the treadmill and skipping the weights, think back to what your goals are and see how strength training will align you to meet those goals. The take away message should be:
Benefits of Increased Muscle Mass
Gaining muscle mass gives you several benefits
- Greater bone density
- Less pain
- Better quality of life
- Improved posture
- Reduction in symptoms of certain chronic illnesses
- Better endurance performance
Ready to Get Started?
Looking for a plan or a personal trainer to help you meet those needs in the weight room? Contact Amanda: email@example.com