While many of us struggle with weight gain once we are over 50, others seem to be winning the battle of the bulge without really trying! What's their secret to staying healthy, fit, strong and mentally sharp, while the rest of us slowly degenerate and give in to old age. What are they doing that many of us are not? Weightlifting at 50 and over! Let's read on to learn just how rewarding it can be.
Weightlifting at 50 And Over
If more of us understood the importance of Weightlifting at 50 and over, then I am sure many more would embrace strength training and reap the rewards that come with it. For it is at this stage of life that building muscle becomes of the utmost importance.
As we age our muscles tend to weaken, robbing us of our ability to live an active independent life. One where we could walk, run, and do the day to day things without assistance. Strength training helps us to build strong bones to protect us from falls. It also allows us to continue to do the things we take for granted like shopping, lifting, and moving on our own without aid.
The older you get, the more important strength, agility, power, and lean mass become. Yet this isn't how most people approach old age. They expect strength and all the other trappings of physical capacity to degenerate, and so they do. It's what happens all around us everyday. Seniors are feeble, right?
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Weightlifting benefits the brain as well as the body.
Strength training and weightlifting helps improve a memory, slows the onset of dementia, and strengthens the heart - it also increases blood flow to the brain and improves cognitive function.
In young adults, even 20-minutes of training can boost long-term memory. For older adults, a brief workout improves the memory due to the release of the stress hormone norepinephrine.
Women have been slow to embrace weightlifting over 50 as part of their exercise routine. Many shy away from it as they still believe the old myth that weight training will make them bulk up! But nothing could be further from the truth. You will only bulk up if you feed your body in order to do so, by eating a high calorie diet and taking supplements.
Here's the truth:
When you pick up heavy objects your muscles get STRONGER (but not necessarily bigger). If you pump yourself full of testosterone and eat way more calories than you are burning every day, again, you will get bigger.
But if you pick up heavy objects and eat a caloric deficit (and eat the right kinds of food – actual healthy foods), your muscles will get stronger and denser; you will burn the fat on top of your muscle, and you will get that “toned” look that you’re looking for. via 7 Strength Training Myths Every Woman Should Know
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) state that adults should do some form of strength training at least twice a week. All the major muscle groups need to be worked in addition to 150 minutes of cardio at moderate intensity.
But sadly, although most of us fall short of meeting these goals, it is women, between the ages of 65-74 that really miss the mark. Only 15% meet the CDC guidelines for both strength training and cardio which is very unfortunate for women over 50.
Some of the benefits of weightlifting at 50 and over are:
- Weightlifting may improve mental health by helping the brain cope better with stress.
- It will help you become a stronger, leaner version of yourself, thus giving you confidence.
- You will develop a lean strong body and a strong heart.
- More and more research is finding that weightlifting, in fact, is the only type of exercise that can significantly slow, and even reverse, the decline in muscle mass, bone density, and strength. All of which were once considered unavoidable parts of aging.
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There are so many benefits that Resistance training can bring to our lives that it's a pity that more of us are not hitting the gym more often to strength train. I hope that this article, Weightlifting at 50 and over inspires you to not only add weight training to your fitness plan, but to also get your loved ones up and moving as the benefits are amazing. In no time at all, you will be rewarded with a stronger, healthier, and more confident version of yourself. So ladies let us lift some weights to longevity. Your whole body will thank you for it.