Articles from July 2009

Weight Training Over 40

There are many advantages for women of any age to add a weight training regimen to their workout routine.  Weight training not only increases your lean muscle mass but it also increases your metabolic rate, allowing you to burn more calories throughout the day.  Muscle cells are continually active and burn more calories than fat cells, which are dormant storage cells.  Since our metabolic rate is an important step in managing health, doing things to keep calories burning is critical to our weight maintenance and to feeling good about ourselves.  The more muscle you build, the better your overall health will be.

For women over 40, the benefits of weight training are even more significant.  As we age, women naturally lose muscle mass at a much faster rate.  Weight training can counteract that decrease by preventing loss of muscle mass and allowing you to actually increase the amount of muscle on your body.  There are many studies that show that weight training in women over 40 can also improve other medical complications like diabetes, arthritis, and even depression.

From a mental health standpoint, weight training and the effect it has on metabolic rate will give you more energy and release feel-good endorphins that help you create positive energy and well-being.  If you combine aerobic exercise and weight training, you can have an enormous impact on your overall health – physical and mental.

Worried you might end up looking like a female Arnold Schwarzenegger?  It’s really not something you have to worry about.  In order to build those big, bulky muscles, you need very heavy weights and a lot of testosterone.  The weight training you will be doing consists of a lot of repetition using a small amount of weights.  What will happen over time is beautiful definition.

Do you have flabby arms?  Did you inherit your grandma’s swinging triceps flab? Try arm exercises to tighten the flab and give you beautifully shaped arms.  Trust me; you’ll be dying for summer and an excuse to wear sleeveless blouses.

One of the best reasons for women over 40 to consider weight training is because of the benefit it has for your bones.  Bone density begins to decrease as women age;   weight training will increase bone density and help prevent osteoporosis as well as keep your tendons and ligaments flexible and your joints strong.

As your body grows stronger and leaner, things like picking up your children or grandchildren will become easier – and so will things like going dancing, hiking in the mountains, and climbing stairs.  Adding weight training to your fitness program is a sure first step in becoming the new and improved you.