If you’re trying to get fit or lose weight you may automatically turn to cardio exercise.
Now, it’s true that Cardio is great for heart health and for burning calories, but strength training is essential to toning your body and really revving up the metabolism.
Don’t be intimidated by the idea of strength training…
It is not the same as bodybuilding and doesn’t have to mean pumping iron at the gym. You can do it at home using hand weights or resistance bands. If you do belong to a gym, try adding in a circuit of the weight machines after you cardio workout. Or, just use your own body weight; push-ups, pull-ups, crunches, lunges, and squats are all strength training exercises!
Benefits of strength training:
Muscle naturally burns more calories than fat. This means that strength training can lead to a faster and more efficient metabolism, and your body will burn more calories even at rest. As a matter of fact, muscle tissue burns 15 times more calories than fat tissue!
Support bone health
: Strength training is one of the number one ways to increase bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. This becomes increasingly important as we age and begin to lose bone mass.
Manage chronic conditions
Adding strength training into your routine can help to alleviate the symptoms of many chronic health conditions. It has been shown to help with arthritis, diabetes, back pain, etc. As with other forms of exercise, it also helps to support emotional health and fight anxiety and depression.
Strong muscles perform better and require less oxygen. This translates to less stress on the heart when you are being active. This also means that strength training can help to lower blood pressure.
Reduce injury risk
As you build muscle it helps to protect your joints from injury. It also helps to improve balance and coordination, and to speed up recovery time if an injury occurs.
Aerobic exercise can help you to slim down, but it is strength training that will firm and tone your body. Even a few short sessions each week can result in a stronger and leaner physique!