When people think of exercise, they often think of cardio first. Cardio has a place in your workout routine, but many people miss out on a very important aspect of fitness when they focus on cardio workouts alone: Strength training. Don’t put all your fitness eggs in one basket! Here are just a few of the ways strength training improves your health and helps you to reach your fitness goals.
Improved Bone Density
When you’re young, you may feel like you’ll be strong forever. But over the years your body changes in a lot of subtle ways you may not even notice. One of the side effects of growing older is reduced bone density, especially in women. By adding strength training to your fitness routine, you can help to offset some of the bone density loss experienced in midlife.
According to Los Angeles personal trainer Lalo Fuentes, by the time you’re 70, you’ll only have about 50 to 55 percent of your muscle mass left. That is why many people feel weaker and more fatigued as they get older. You have to remember that you can prevent this fate by doing some strength training!
Lifting weights helps to prevent bone loss and make you stronger. Working with a personal trainer to develop a strength training program to build up your core and hip muscles makes you stronger, decreases the chances of falling as you age, and keeps your bones strong.
You Look Good!
If you’re not getting the aesthetic results you want from your cardio program and diet, then adding strength training may just be the answer. Fitness trainer Lalo Fuentes, CSCS, says that when you maintain a strong body, you feel better about yourself and walk just a little bit taller. Those jeans you haven’t been able to comfortably wear for a couple of years? They may fit like a glove once you add strength training into your fitness routine!
When you increase your metabolism (how many calories you burn when your body is at rest) with increased muscle mass, then you’re able to reduce your body fat. While the numbers on the scale may not change that much, the ratio of muscle to fat in your body will. You’ll be leaner and stronger with a little strength training.
Increase Your Flexibility
When you work your muscles through their full range of motion with strength training, you’re improving the overall flexibility of your body. As you increase your flexibility, you’re helping to reduce the risk of injury, back pain, and pulled muscles. So, a good strength training program will enhance your cardio program too!
Plus, when your tendons, ligaments, and muscles are strong then they’re less likely to give way when placed under stress. No person likes to be sidelined by injury – which is one of the best reasons to add strength training into your routine if you haven’t yet!
How do you get started with strength training? Your best bet is to find a personal trainer like Lalo Fuentes to help show you how to properly add it to your workout routine!