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Don't hang up those cleats just yet

At 78 years of age Jack had few golfers his age to golf with. His friend Marcus was 73 and about ready to hang up his cleats for good. Marcus could play nine holes and that was about it; the next day he’d be too rundown to play again. Jack insisted that Marcus start doing the strength training program Jack had been doing for years. Jack said, "Anybody can stick to one half hour a week. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain."

A year later Marcus was playing 18 holes of golf, and the next day, he would play 18 holes again. He was hitting the ball farther and enjoying golf again. Marcus had added quality years to his life, and it took just minutes a week.

Every time Marcus exercised he would do a little more. Each week he gave himself ample time to recover, and because of that each week he would improve.  52 weeks of continuing improvement add up.

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The many benefits of strength training

From this LA Times article Strength training does more than bulk up muscles:

A growing body of research shows that working out with weights has health benefits beyond simply bulking up one's muscles and strengthening bones. Studies are finding that more lean muscle mass may allow kidney dialysis patients to live longer, give older people better cognitive function, reduce depression, boost good cholesterol, lessen the swelling and discomfort of lymphedema after breast cancer and help lower the risk of diabetes.

"Muscle is our largest metabolically active organ, and that's the backdrop that people usually forget," said Kent Adams, director of the exercise physiology lab at Cal State Monterey Bay. Strengthening the muscles "has a ripple effect throughout the body on things like metabolic syndrome and obesity."

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Healthy Hearts and Strength Training

Is strength training safe for cardiovascular health and is it healthy? You might be surprised by the results of one study. From this study, Strength Training Early After Myocardial Infarction, comes this quote:

“For the three treatment groups, 30 of 42 subjects had one or more cardiovascular complication (arrhythmias, angina, ischemia, hypertension, hypotension) during the aerobic exercises as compared to only 1 subject with complications during the resistive exercises.”

 An interesting result that speaks for itself - 30 complications for aerobic rehab versus one for resistance exercise rehab.

Another quote from the study: