Nobody really knows the exact reason why our bodies deteriorate with age; the process of aging is extremely complex and varies as to how it affects different people and even different animals. However, there are many lifestyle factors that have been proven to slow down and reverse the process of aging. In this blog we will be covering one of these factors; resistance training and going over how it allows people to maintain overall health and well-being as they go deep into old age.
7 Reasons why you should resistance train as you age
1.) Preservation of Muscle Mass
As you age, you gradually lose muscle mass, this condition is called sarcopenia. Part of the reason for the loss of muscle is because we tend to be less active as we age and engage our muscles less, which leads to the body breaking down the muscle since it costs energy to maintain unused muscle. By resistance training and keeping your muscles engaged and used on a regular basis, you can prevent this loss and counteract the negative results of muscle loss. (More strength which makes daily life easier, less saggy skin since the muscle can keep it tight etc.)
2.) Improved Bone Density
This point is linked closely to point one, our bones are living tissue that is being constantly broken down and replaced. There is a condition called osteoporosis which occurs as we age where creation of new bone does not keep up with lose of old bone causing our bones to become weak and brittle to the point where a minor fall or heavy coughing can cause fractures. Resistance training puts stress on your bones, stimulating them to become denser and stronger. In turn, will prevent conditions like osteoporosis.
3.) Healthier Metabolism
Our metabolism tends to slow down as we age, having more muscle and training regularly can keep our metabolism high ensuring a healthier body composition. Minimising the build up of fat in the body which can prevent a whole host of negative conditions that contribute to aging.
4.) Enhanced Joint Health
Resistance training can strengthen the muscles around the joints, providing better support and reduces the risk of joint-related issues, such as arthritis. Getting regular blood flow into the joints acts like applying WD-40 to your bike parts for example.
5.) Mental Health Benefits
Regular exercise including resistance training has been proven to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. It can enhance cognitive function and help prevent/delay cognitive decline attributed to aging.
6.) Cardiovascular Health
Although resistance training primarily focuses on building strength and is an anaerobic form of exercises, it still contributes to better heart health, cholesterol levels and overall cardiovascular function.
7.) Maintain Independence
As previously mentioned, resistance training improves and maintains strength, balance, coordination, and stamina. All these elements allow you to remain independent into old age so you can continue doing things like carrying your groceries, household chores, and other activities and reduce risk of injury when performing these tasks.
Resistance training has a myriad of benefits and can have a significant impact on your quality of life as you age and even reverse the effects of aging. One keynote, this applies to anyone at any age, but it is even more important the older you are, before starting any kind of exercise program consult a professional for advice whether is a healthcare profession or certified fitness trainer. They will be able to help provide you a safe, personalised workout regime that is adjusted to your specific needs and any potential medical considerations.
We hope this article provided you valuable and useful information. Were there any points we missed? Anything you want to add? What is your experience with resistance training relating to aging? Leave a comment to share your thoughts and subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date!