Getting older is a natural part of life that a lot of people actively try to avoid because ageing is often associated with frailty, dependence, and health problems.
While it’s true that our bodies naturally start losing muscle mass once we hit the 30-year mark (generally at a rate of 5% per decade), this isn’t a concrete jail sentence for our health.
You don’t have to lift Olympic-sized weights and become a professional bodybuilder to keep up your muscle mass as you age (although, you absolutely can if you like!)
Having a set of dumbbells, a kettlebell, or any other weight-based equipment around the house is an easy way to encourage you to lift the weight on a regular basis.
Lifting weights and other strength training exercises work by triggering micro-tears in the targeted muscles, that then rebuild and increase in size. By regularly doing strength exercises, you can actively combat the rate of muscle degeneration and reduce the risk of frailty or related injuries and illnesses as you get older.
Increasing energy and fitness levels
Ageing doesn’t mean we stop doing our day-to-day activities and chores such as carrying shopping, cleaning or even maintaining a physical job.
Strength training helps to increase your fitness levels as well as build your muscle capabilities, allowing you to keep up with life regardless of age. The better your fitness levels, the more energy you’ll have to do all the things you want and need to do.
Burning fat and keeping weight-related illness away
Strength training burns fat at an impressive rate, helping to keep those creeping calories from affecting an ageing waistline and risk of weight-related illnesses such as high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
As we age, it can become a lot more difficult to keep our bodies lean and even lose weight. This can be caused by a lot of factors, some including the decrease in lean muscle mass making it harder for the body to burn higher amounts of calories, as well as lowering your metabolism.
Improving your self-esteem
As you start to see results from strength training and feel more energized to face the day, you may find your self-esteem has been elevated. Higher self-esteem can help to combat mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression, as well as reducing your cortisol levels (the stress hormone) linked to weight gain, mental health disorders, and high blood pressure.
The best perk about strength training is that it’s never too late to start!