Benefits of Weight Training

Below are 10 reasons why weight training is vital for good health and wellbeing. Whether you're an athlete, weekend warrior, or just want to look better naked, everyone should incorporate weight training into their fitness regimen.

No longer is it considered a bodybuilding sport with huge guys hanging about wearing fluorescent pants and string vests, it is now recognized as one of the most important factors in living a long life as well as elevating your metabolism helping you to stay lean. 

A number of studies I have read recently have shown that the stronger you are, the longer you’ll live. Relationships for a longer life have been found for grip, leg and abdominal strength.

This makes perfect sense as we know disability kills, so by staying physically active and strong you’ll be safe-guarding against loss of physical mobility and function.

 1. Avoid Muscle Loss

Adults who do not weight train lose between 2.2kg and 3.2kg of muscle every decade. Although endurance exercise improves our cardiovascular fitness it does not prevent the loss of muscle tissue. Only weight training maintains our muscle mass and strength through out our mid-life years.

2. Avoid Metabolic Rate Reduction

Because muscle is very active tissue, muscle loss is accompanied by a reduction in resting metabolism. Research indicates that an average adult experience's a 2% to 5% reduction in metabolic rate very decade of life. Because regular weight training prevents muscle loss, it also prevents the accompanying decrease in resting metabolic rate.      

3. Increase Muscle Mass

Because most adults do not perform weight training, they need to first replace the muscle tissue that has been lost through inactivity. Fortunately, research shows that a standard weight training program can increase muscle mass by about 1.4kg over an eight training period. This is the typical training response for men and women who do 25 minutes of weight training one day each week.

4. Increase Metabolic Rate

Research reveals that adding 1.4kg of muscle increases our resting metabolism by 7% and our daily calorie requirements by 15%.At rest, a kilogram of muscle requires 77 calories per day for tissue maintenance, and during exercise muscle energy utilization increase dramatically. Adults who replace muscle through sensible weight training use more calories all day long, thereby reducing the likelihood of fat accumulation.

5. Reduce Body Fat

In a 1994 study, weight training produced 1.8kg of fat loss after three months of training, even though the subjects were eating 15% more calories each day. That is, a basic weight training program resulted in 1.4kg more muscle, 1.8kg less fat, and 370 more calories per day food intake.

6. Increase Bone Mineral Density

The effects of progressive weight training exercises are similar for muscle tissue and bone tissue. The same training stimulus that increases muscle strength also increases bone density and mineral content. A 1993 study demonstrated significant increase in the bone mineral density of the upper femur after four months of weight training.

7. Improve Glucose Metabolism

Researchers have reported a 23% increase in glucose uptake after 4 months of weight training. Because poor glucose metabolism is associated with adult onset diabetes, improved glucose metabolism is an important benefit of regular weight training.

8. Reduce Low Back Pain

Years of research on weight training and back pain conducted at than University of Florida Medical School have shown that strong low back muscles are less likely to be injured than weaker back muscles. A recent study found that low back patients had significantly less back pain after 10 week of specific (full range) strength exercise for the lumbar spine muscles.

9. Reducing Resting Blood Pressure

Weight training alone has been shown to reduce resting blood pressure significantly. A 1995 study revealed that combining strength and aerobic training is an even more effective means of improving blood pressure readings. After two months of combined exercise, the study participants dropped their systolic blood pressure by 5mm hg and their diastolic blood pressure by 3mm hg.

10. Improve blood Lipid Levels

Although the effect of weight training on blood lipid levels needs further research, several studies have revealed improved blood lipid profiles after several weeks of weight training, it is important to note that improvements in blood lipid levels are similar for both endurance and strength exercise.

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