Flipping through my ACE Personal Training Manual, I discovered a section that highlights all the benefits of resistance training. It is such an important part of your workout regimen, and should supplement your cardio workouts. Resistance training refers to adding a “load,” or weight, to a particular movement exercise.
Getting ready for some weight training at TOP Fitness…
In general, in two people of the same weight, the one with the greater muscle mass (lower body fat) will have a higher resting metabolic rate. Meaning that at rest, the person with greater muscle mass will be burning more calories. So with more muscle, all of your movements throughout the day will be that much more beneficial!
If a person has good core stability and mobility, and exhibits proper form and balance with resistance exercises, he or she might see these other benefits:
- Improved body composition (achieve a “toned” look) which leads to lower risk for all sorts of diseases
- Decreased injury risk (muscles absorb impact and protect joint)
- Increased Bone Mineral Density (decreased risk of osteoporosis)
- Stronger bones
- Improved lower-back health
- Reduced discomfort from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis
- Reduced prevalence of depression
- Improved energy, confidence, and overall quality of life
We have heard it time and time again, exercise is so important to our daily living. I believe the medical community is unanimous on this point…we were made to move. In hunter-gatherer communities, research has shown that they show far fewer instances of disease and injury because they are always on the go, chasing down their food, moving from place to place. Now, we wind up sitting down for most of our days.
Get your power back and add some resistance training to your workouts this summer, 2-3 times a week:
- Free weights
- Body weight isometric holds (long contractions, like the plank)
- Cable machines
- Medicine balls
- Bands and tubing
I am really excited about getting back into swimming and kayaking this summer, and I like to supplement my workout with some light exercises with 15-20lb free weights. The most important thing is for you to enjoy what you are doing and to feel good. Remember to take it slow, and start with a low resistance that does not feel too taxing. But, be creative! And move.