Saturday, September 1, 2012

Strength Training for Women Over 50 is Mandatory

Why is strength training for women over 50 a mandatory activity?

To quote Dr. Pamela Peeke, author of Fight Fat After Forty, writes that
Weight lifting in combination with aerobic exercise is a non-negotiable essential in every over-forty woman's life. It is the secret to removing weight as well as to keeping it off.

Here are several reasons WHY strength training is mandatory for women over 50:
  1. After the age of 40, we start losing muscle mass at the rate of up to 10% per decade. That's why 70 and 80 year old women (and men) shuffle. That's why getting up from the couch or lounge chair requires a major effort the older you get.
  2. If weight loss is your goal, dieting alone will expedite muscle loss. Dieters who hit the wall after a few months are experiencing the loss of muscle mass. They are losing the furnace (muscle) that burns fat.
  3. Increasing muscle mass improves circulation and works your heart (a muscle).
  4. Strength training reduces stress and helps alleviate the depression that sometimes accompanies menopause. It's a scientific fact that you will feel better after a workout (given that you do it correctly). The vast majority of people who hate exercise learn to appreciate the post workout good feelings.
  5. Diabesity is becoming a raging epidemic. According to Dr. David Williams, a proponent of alternative medicine, "40% of your ability to control insulin levels and 80% of your ability to use blood sugar is directly controlled by muscle tissue."
Personal Improvements Driven by Strength Training
I have to confess that strength training after 50 (in my case, 60) can look like climbing Mt. Everest, at least at first. But I persisted through the the leaning curve to lose 10 pounds and get a whole lot stronger. The improvements in blood pressure, sugar levels and cholesterol levels will be calculated in the near future.

Recommendations for Starting Your Own Strength Training Program
  1. Get a medical checkup before you start any program of exercise.
  2. Hire a personal trainer, especially if you've never done weight lifting.
    Can't afford a personal trainer?
    Read New Rules of Lifting for Women and then New Rules of Lifting for Life to educate yourself and provide workouts.
  3. Have fun with weight training. Challenge yourself to defy aging!
Additional Resources

P.S. When you do strength training, your body needs more protein for muscle growth. Use this Protein Calculator to help you select the proper nutrition for your program aimed at increasing the muscle mass of your body.

No comments:

Post a Comment