The second type of exercise is strength-building exercise. This is the type of exercise where you do resistance training or lift weights.
Have you heard the phrase, “Use it or loose it” ? Well, this principle is true for many aspects of your body’s functioning and is especially true for your muscles. Without exercising them, you can loose up to 5% of your muscle mass, every 10 years.
But think for a moment about people that don’t exercise at all for years and years on end. Their weight doesn’t go down 5% every 10 years does it? No, it goes up and up and up every year.
Well, that’s because their muscle mass is actually being replaced with fat. And since muscle weighs more than fat, their body fat percentage is going way up even if they are managing to keep the scale on the same number.
But the good news is, with regular strength workouts, they can get that muscle mass all back in a matter of just a few months.
Here’s another thing for you to think about: For every pound of fat you trade in for a pound of muscle, not only are you going to look better and feel better, but you’re also going to be able to burn more calories, even while you’re sitting around!
That’s because muscle tissue actually burns its own calories to keep itself alive, whereas fat doesn’t. That means the more muscle you have in your body, the more calories you’re going to burn every minute throughout the day. Whether you’re working out or not.
And the “use it or loose it” principle also applies to your bones as well.
The best way to maintain healthy bone density throughout your 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and beyond is weight bearing exercise. Lifting weights or doing some other type resistance exercise also stimulates the bones to lay down more calcium so it can better resist the load that you’re placing on them. Healthy bone density is important for everyone, but especially if you’re worried about osteoporosis or osteopenia, so if you’re concerned with loosing bone density, weight bearing exercise should definitely be a part of your exercise routine.
*Adapted from the Being Well Lifestyles Home Study Course by Dr. Jay Warren.
Drawing on over two decades of experience as a hands-on holistic practitioner, Dr. Jay Warren is a primary healthcare provider and licensed chiropractor in the San Diego area. He has spent tens of thousands of clinical hours helping his patients achieve their optimal health potential through holistic approaches bolstered by years of personal experimentation, education and research. Dr. Jay creates customized plans integrating exercise, nutrition and stress management strategies to overcome a myriad of health maladies. For more information, call 619-239-0053, email Info@BeingWellLifestyles.com or visit www.BeingWellLifestyles.com.