Tag Archives for " health benefits weight lifting "
The health benefits of weight training have been proven in study after study, yet people, especially Baby Boomers, continue to remain largely inactive and susceptible to a host of preventable diseases and conditions.
Before we get to the list of great benefits you will receive if you do it, we need to address the question of why you aren’t already.
Obesity has been at epidemic proportions for some time and is getting worse. Â Overall, 38 percent of Americans are now obese — 40% amongÂ women — and the crisis is growing among our children. Plus, another third of US adults are considered overweight. That’s the majority of the population.
Doctors don’t fare tons better than the rest of us. According to the Physicians Health Study (2007), 40% of doctors were overweight and 23% were obese. A majority.
Global Advances in Health and Medicine points out:
“While physicians are less likely than average Americans to be overweight or obese, they are not immune to our national obesogenic tendencies. Indeed, as a medical oncologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, Edward Creagan, MD, so aptly put it, ‘More of us commit suicide with a fork than any other instrument.’ Physician obesity rates likely have radically important implications.”
Doctors are not properly trained in exercise or nutrition. Our medical system is built around a “fix it with a pill” approach that relies on medicating us when a health issue arises.
So our exercise health is pretty much left up to us to figure out. You can change your body and dramatically improve your health, but don’t expect your doctor to lead this effort for you.
And the fitness industry is filled with tons of conflicting information and baffle-gab sales pitches. It’s enough to discourage anyone.
It’s clear the problem stems from us eating too much and exercising too little. Genetics is often used as an easy excuse, but researchers say the fact that each new generationÂ has become progressively fatter than the last for the past 30 years rules out genetics as the cause.
It’s on us and how we live: staring into video screens all day, texting, gaming and posting as we eat too many of the wrong foods while sitting on the couch.
Heart disease, diabetes and cancer are among the diseases associated with obesity. Obesity-related diabetes alone “will break the bank of our healthcare system,” according to Dr. James O. Hill, director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, as quoted by WebMD.
What could turn the tide?
Weight lifting. Strength training. Call it resistance training if you prefer. It’s all the same thing: using resistance against your muscles to make them stronger. It can be done with body weight, inexpensive resistance bands, free weights or machines, at home or in a gym.
Here are the benefits. This can change your life:
On that last point, it’s worth noting that many people are coping with anxiety and depression. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America says 40 million people suffer from Anxiety and more than 15 people will experience clinical Depression annually.
Being overweight is no fun. Feeling strong and in better shape feels good. I realize that’s oversimplification, but honestly, if you are fighting those things, strength training can be anÂ avenue to a happier outlook. The goal isn’t to be perfect but to feel better about your health and appearance.
Â Consider these points from the Mayo Clinic:
Regular exercise probably helps ease depression in a number of ways, which may include:
Regular exercise has many psychological and emotional benefits, too. It can help you:
Clearly, there are overwhelmingly positive reasons to take up strength training.
But studies have shown that some people are intimidated to join a gym, or can’t afford it. If you can afford it, I would highly recommend trying one of these gyms out.
If you can’t join a gym, here’s a post I wrote on how you can get started with a Simple Workouts at home using inexpensive Resistance Bands as your gym gear. The article also shows dumbbells and and a bench, but those aren’t necessary to get you started. You could follow this workout plan at the gym, too.
I hope, especially if you are dealing with overweight or obesity, that you will give this a try. It really can change your life.