I just read an article today about how less than 20% of all Americans actually include strength training in their exercise program. Apparently, the national objective for 2010 is to get this number up to 30%. That means that we as personal trainers have a huge challenge ahead of us to motivate others to jump on the strength training bandwagon! The American College of Sports Medicine and other groups recommend a minimum of 2 strength training workouts per week. With the vast array of interesting exercises and gadgets available, there are certainly plenty of ways to work these sessions into just about any exercise routine. However, it is important to make sure you take the time to learn proper form, etc. I originally taught myself using a book and asking people questions, but it is worth one or more sessions with a trainer just to make sure you know what to do and how to do it… especially if you plan to do this for the rest of your life.
Strength training will help you…
- Build muscle; burn fat… one pound of muscle can burn up to 50 calories even at rest. This is one of the #1 ways to increase your resting metabolism so that your body literally becomes a fat-burning machine!
- Improve your posture
- Decrease your blood pressure
- Help you look and feel younger
- Relieve stress
- Increase bone density, which can help prevent osteoporosis
- Improve your overall quality of life, because your muscles will not fatigue as easily with normal activities of daily living (especially in old age).
- Improve your stabilizer muscles, which helps improve balance; this will help prevent injuries and accidents – especially in older years.
All of these reasons are what keep me motivated with my routine. I actually enjoy the challenge of trying to lift heavier weights and pushing out more reps. I’m also about to enter into my late 30’s, and I love it that people think I’m ten years younger than I am! My goal is to still be training myself and others even when I’m 80!!!
Anyway, I hope this helps give you that little push to get you going.