The saying goes: Age is just a number! But, we all can agree on one thing that with each passing year, things change within our body especially after stepping into our ’30s. And, it’s not usually for the best. With aging come concerns like loss of energy, risk of diseases, complications and symptoms of a weakened body, lesser strength, balance, and mobility. We start losing muscle mass and we tend to gain weight easily if we binge eat over a weekend and it accelerates over time if nothing is done about it.
While aging and inactivity are mostly blamed, it is truly the lack of deeper and more muscle fiber stimulation that is responsible for how we feel. The most common factor associated with aging is the loss of muscle mass and strength which affects our bones, metabolism and mental acuity.
In fact, greater muscle strength has been linked to reduced mortality, faster metabolisms and improved cognitive function as well. While there are environmental and genetic factors involved, yet most of the symptoms that accompany aging can be slowed and even reversed.
There are two types of aging: Body aging and Chronological aging. You grow a year older after every passing year and so does your body. Though we cannot reverse the chronological aging process, we can reverse body aging.
There does exist a solution
Introducing resistance training into your weekly routine can help you combat physical age-related concerns, plus maintain range of motion, strength, and balance. The amazing thing is that the reversal of your body aging can be attained with very short (20 minutes), infrequent (1-2 times a week) and most importantly, very safe (customised) way. Strength training can benefit older adults by:
Increasing bone density
Strength training puts stress on your bones from the movement and force patterns, which leads to stronger and denser bones.
Increasing muscle mass
Studies have found that by implementing a strength training program, older adults were able to improve their muscle mass and muscle strength by 30 percent. More muscle means more strength, better balance, and an increased metabolism.
Enabling better balance and functionality
For older adults daily activities like climbing stairs, sitting down in a chair, tying shoelaces etc start to get difficult due to stiffness of joints and weaker muscles but having stronger muscles helps to do these activities with ease.
Improving body composition
Resistance Training helps to maintain muscle mass, bone density and it also lowers body fat percentage due to which we become healthier and chances of getting a lifestyle and obesity related disease decrease.
Improving quality of life
Adults who participate in a resistance training often see improvements in their psychosocial well-being
Research has shown that mitochondria, the powerhouse of cells, will not only jump start and increase energy production but also reverse the very genetic profile of our DNA with exercise.
Insulin Resistance is a major determining factor of the effects of aging. Insulin Resistance causes ailments such as weight gain, high blood pressure/triglycerides/LDL, pre & Type II diabetes etc. These symptoms are an indication of the processes in the body going bad. However, they are all reversible. Insulin resistance can be reversed with the combination of Strength Training and whole food nutrition. Strength training stimulates greater glucose metabolism during and after workout and it also triggers an adaptive response for more muscle and thus greater metabolic potential for the next workout. This compound effect leads to improved insulin sensitivity due to greater muscle strength.
As we get older we get slower, heavier and lazier. The signs of aching joints and brain fog could be small indicators on the radar or a wake-up call. While we acknowledge ‘slowing down’ is part of life, what many don’t understand is the direct correlation that exists between how we feel (the slowing of our metabolism, loss of mental sharpness and mobility) with the loss of muscle mass. Strength Training Changes Everything Strength training helps slowing and reversing the aging process, increasing your energy, improving the immunity of your body , reducing mortality, improving brain function, having more energy, avoiding aches and pains. Exercise makes you look and feel younger and it has the ability to reverse your biological age by a decade!
Remember you have to stay in your body all your life, make sure you keep it in a good condition.
(Author is owner of Livefit, Personal Trainer & Nutritionist. He can be mailed at [email protected])