Strength Training is for Everyone

October 20, 2011

Whether you are an athlete striving for more power and speed, or are primarily interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, the benefits of strength training are important. Researchers estimate that we lose five to seven pounds of muscle mass per decade as we age.  A regular strength training program increases lean muscle mass, reduces body fat, and burns calories more efficiently. A successful strength training program can consist of equipment-free routines which depend on your body for weight, such as push-ups or leg squats, free weights, or weight machines. Once you come up with a strength training program, consider changing the routine every four to six weeks to prevent a 'plateau' period as your body adapts to stress. Strength training also helps you:
  • Develop strong bones. Strength training increases bone density and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Control weight. Muscle burns calories more efficiently — which can result in weight loss. The more toned your muscles, the easier it is to control your weight.
  • Reduce your risk of injury. Building muscle helps protect your joints from injury and contributes to better balance.
  • Boost your stamina. As you get stronger, you won't fatigue as easily.
  • Manage chronic conditions. Strength training can relieve the symptoms of many chronic illnesses, including arthritis, back pain, depression, diabetes, and osteoporosis.
Two to three strength training sessions a week lasting just 20 to 30 minutes is recommended for most people. You may notice improvement in just a few weeks. No matter what your age, regular strength training can lead to a healthier, happier life.

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