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The benefits of resistance training

Here at Weight Management at The Group, we not only focus on the nutritional, wellness, and behavioral aspects of losing weight and living a healthier life. Fitness and activity are one of the tenets of our program, and we expect all of our patients to incorporate some kind of fitness routine into their daily lives.

We get a lot of questions of how to get rid of “this jiggly stuff here” or “tone my tummy here.” Unfortunately, it’s never this easy. It’s impossible to “spot tone” when it comes to how to look thinner, or in a lot of cases, change the elasticity of already stretched-out skin. But what we do tell our patients is to get better at EVERYTHING, you’ve got to strength train.

First off, resistance or strength training simply means a physical fitness regime that is designed to improve muscular fitness by exercising a specific muscle or muscle group against external resistance, including free-weights, weight machines, or your own body weight. The basic principle is to apply a load and overload the muscle so it needs to adapt and get stronger. The important thing to remember is that lifting weights is not just for the bodybuilder or power lifter in the gym. Regular strength or resistance training helps prevent the natural loss of lean muscle mass that comes with aging.

Many of us know the benefits of a resistance training program, but let’s point out a few for those who may not.

  • It makes you stronger and more fit: when we incorporate strength training into our workouts, we will see ourselves able to do more in our daily lives. It’s not about looking thinner or more toned: it’s about functionality.
  • It helps protect bone health and muscle mass: Around age 30, we start to lose lean muscle mass; as much as 3 to 5% per year. Only 30 minutes a few times a week can improve this, as well as improve, again, how our body functions.
  • It can help keep weight off for good: strength training improves our resting metabolism, which translates into more lean muscle mass and the more our body burns fat at rest.
  • It means better body mechanics: this benefits our posture, balance, and coordination. As we age, a strong body means less balance issues, less falling, less broken bones.
  • It helps with chronic disease management: consistent strength training can help those with arthritis pain, and help those with diabetes manage their medication and improve glucose control.
  • It’s a natural mood boost: strength training helps release endorphins, our “feel good” hormone. Our mood will improve, we will have more energy, and our sleep will improve.

 

Strength training is for EVERYONE. Want to run faster and stronger? Do yoga better? Kill it on the bicycle? Or just feel and look better? Look up how to get started with your local gym, community center, personal trainer, or even find workout videos on YouTube or Google. What are you waiting for?

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