Wearing glasses, hearing aids and dying one’s hair are effective methods of reversing the effects of aging, but the most effective thing we can do to reverse the aging process is to do regular strength training exercise. It is the most effective exercise in addressing the biomarkers that effect not only how young we look, but more importantly, how we young we feel. Our bodies undergo many changes that can be reversed by proper strength training:
- Muscle mass decreases. As adults we lose about five pounds of lean muscle each decade. Stronger muscles are more toned, and this requires more calories. Stronger toned muscles present a younger look.
- Metabolism decreases. More muscle requires more calories. Those who are stronger can have the metabolism they had when they were twenty years younger.
- Fat increases as a percentage of body weight. By increasing muscle mass, fat as a percentage is automatically less, and this extra muscle requires more fat burning calories. A stronger leaner person will be more active and the increased activity will further enhance one’s health and burn additional calories.
- Loss of strength, energy, and speed. Proper exercise will make you stronger, and day to day activities will be less strenuous and be less taxing energy-wise.
- Loss of aerobic capacity. Choose a strength training program that involves circuit training to get the aerobic benefits. Non-stop circuit training method has a very significant cardiovascular effect and increases both aerobic and anaerobic capacity.
- Body cells become resistant to insulin. Added muscles will lower your blood sugar level and lessen the need for insulin.
- Bone mineral density decreases. Increase the demands on the muscular-skeletal system, and as self-protection, the body responds by maintaining stronger muscles and bones.
- Loss of flexibility. More muscle contributes to flexibility. Muscles have the plasticity that tendons and ligaments do not.
- Increased susceptibility to sickness and injury. A stronger body is less like to get injured and will have a stronger immune system. This might be the most important benefit. People wait until injuries occur and then exercise becomes problematic. To help avoid surgery the best thing you can do for your joints is to make the muscles supporting those joints stronger. Take the steps now to avoid herniated discs and hip and knee replacements.
- Unsatisfactory cholesterol/HDL Ratio. Circuit strength training will improve your HDL or High Density Lipoprotein-Cholesterol, the "good" cholesterol.
- Blood Pressure increases. Elevated blood pressure or hypertension is known as "the silent killer" can be alleviated by strength training.
While other forms of exercise might improve a certain biomarker more effectively - running to improve aerobic capacity or yoga to improve flexibility - none address so many as effectively circuit weight training. You need not spend hours in the gym to make a profound difference. The body changes as a form of self-protection in response to increased demands of the body. Instead of trying to find out how much exercise you can handle but find out how little exercise is actually needed to produce a change.
Studies have shown that significant strength increases result from strength training as little as once a week. Not exercising can lead to injuries which will result in more inactivity. You have to do something. Do just enough to cause a change then come back and do it again in a week. As you become stronger you will find you are willing to engage in more activities and this will further enhance your health. It all starts with strength. Just improve a little each week and over time your life will be transformed. At Austin Personal Trainers and New Orleans Fitness Training we have the program to make that transformation.
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