Tag Archives: weight-training

Strength Training Benefits More Than Muscles – Harvard

While eat less; move more; live longer is the mantra of this blog, I hasten to add that strength training should be an integral part of that move more aspect. Harvard HEALTHbeat has come out with a new publication on strength and power training.

Here’s what Harvard has to say on the subject: “Most of us know that strength training (with free weights, weight machines, or resistance bands) can help build and maintain muscle mass and strength. What many of us don’t know is that strong muscles lead to strong bones. And strong bones can help minimize the risk of fracture due to osteoporosis.

b-bonedraw

“A combination of age-related changes, inactivity, and poor nutrition conspire to steal bone mass at the rate of 1% per year after age 40. As bones grow more fragile and susceptible to fracture, they are more likely to break after even a minor fall or a far less obvious stress, such as bending over to tie a shoelace.

“Osteoporosis should be a concern for all of us. Eight million women and two million men in the United States have osteoporosis. It is now responsible for more than two million fractures a year, and experts expect that number will rise. Hip fractures are usually the most serious. Six out of 10 people who break a hip never fully regain their former level of independence. Even walking across a room without help may be impossible.”

I have written several posts on osteoporosis. You can read further on the subject here: What Can I do to Prevent Osteoporosis? An Early Sign of Osteoporosis? Are Men Vulnerable to Osteoporosis as Well as Women? Continue reading

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under bones, Harvard HEALTHbeat, healthy bones, osteoporosis, weight-training

Weight-bearing exercises protect against osteoporosis – Study

Just two days ago I posted on older men being at risk of osteoporosis. “As I reported here, after the age of 50 men are as likely to get osteoporosis as prostate cancer. More to the point, older people of both sexes have great vulnerability to it.”

Now comes a new study that explains how weight-bearing exercises affect our bone structure and fight that disease.

funny_skeleton

Osteoporosis affects more than 200 million people worldwide and is a serious public health concern, according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation. Now, Pamela Hinton, associate professor in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology, has published the first study in men to show that long-term, weight-bearing exercises decrease sclerostin, a protein made in the bone, and increase IGF-1, a hormone associated with bone growth. These changes promote bone formation, increasing bone density. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under aging, osteoporosis, successful aging, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

7 Tips for successful weight training – Harvard

Although I don’t consider it fun, I realize that weight training is a necessity for living a healthy life and keeping my body working.

Here are seven tips from Harvard Medical School that my brother passed along to me.

468769-weights.jpg

“Strength or resistance training challenges your muscles with a stronger-than-usual counterforce, such as pushing against a wall or lifting a dumbbell or pulling on a resistance band. Using progressively heavier weights or increasing resistance makes muscles stronger. This kind of exercise increases muscle mass, tones muscles, and strengthens bones. It also helps you maintain the strength you need for everyday activities — lifting groceries, climbing stairs, rising from a chair, or rushing for the bus.

“The current national guidelines for physical activity recommend strengthening exercises for all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, chest, abdomen, shoulders, and arms) at least twice a week. One set — usually 8 to 12 repetitions of the same movement — per session is effective, though some evidence suggests that two to three sets may be better. Your muscles need at least 48 hours to recover between strength training sessions.

These seven tips can keep your strength training safe and effective.

1    Warm up and cool down for five to 10 minutes. Walking is a fine way to warm up; stretching is an excellent way to cool down. Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Harvard, Harvard Medical School, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

4 Keys to Strength Building and Muscle Mass

Back in August I wrote Good chance you have sarcopenia, or ‘muscle loss’ and how I realized I was experiencing it. I just ran across this nice write up on Eatright, a website of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics which I thought would interest you.

Muscle is harder to build and maintain as we age. In fact, most of us start losing muscle around age 30, with a 3- to 8-percent reduction in lean muscle mass every decade thereafter.

o-START-LIFTING-WEIGHTS-facebook.jpg

This is due to lower testosterone levels in men and lower estrogen levels in women — both hormones that help build muscle — as well as changes in nerve and blood cells and the body not converting amino acids to muscle tissue as efficiently, among other factors. But muscle loss doesn’t have to be inevitable: For adult men and women, regular resistance training exercises are key to building and keeping muscle.

Strength Training and Health
Strength training is an important piece of the fitness equation. Men and women should participate in muscle strengthening activities that work the major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, chest, abdomen, shoulders and arms) at least two times each week. Examples of strength training include lifting weights, using resistance bands and doing push-ups, pull-ups and sit-ups. Even everyday activities such as carrying groceries, playing with your kids and gardening can strengthen muscles. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under muscle building, strength, strength training

Increasing Muscle Strength Can Improve Brain Function

Increased muscle strength leads to improved brain function in adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), new results from a recent trial led by the University of Sydney has revealed.

Regular readers know how strongly I feel about exercise benefiting the brain as much as the body. A look at my Page – Important facts about your brain (and exercise benefits) will fill you in. What is exciting about this study is that it focuses on weight training. Most of the exercise benefits I have read about follow cardio work. So, this is indeed new and exciting.

brainexercise

With 135 million people forecast to suffer from dementia in 2050, the study’s findings–published in the Journal of American Geriatrics –have implications for the type and intensity of exercise that is recommended for our growing aging population. Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under aging brain, brain exercise, cardio exercise, Exercise, exercise and brain health, exercise benefits, successful aging

Heavier weight not crucial for muscle growth – Study

I am a senior citizen as regular readers know. So, sometimes, I need to scale down exercises to be appropriate for me. There is nothing sadder than an injury sustained while exercising and trying to make yourself healthier.

So, I was pleased to read of the new research from McMaster University is challenging traditional workout wisdom, suggesting that lifting lighter weights many times is as efficient as lifting heavy weights for fewer repetitions.

arnold-blueprint-cut-training-graphics-3.jpg

Thankfully, you don’t need to mimic Arnold to build your muscles.

 It is the latest in a series of studies that started in 2010, contradicting the decades-old message that the best way to build muscle is to lift heavy weights.

“Fatigue is the great equalizer here,” says Stuart Phillips, senior author on the study and professor in the Department of Kinesiology.  “Lift to the point of exhaustion and it doesn’t matter whether the weights are heavy or light.” Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under weight-training

How Much Weight Should You Lift?

Although the question of how much weight you should lift is a simple one, the answer isn’t so simple. A lot depends on why you are lifting. Do you want to build strength, or just build muscle size?

Bill Geiger, MA, of Bodybuilding.com writes, “You can pick up a 20-pound bar, curl it 75 times, and, after a while, you’ll become fatigued and your arms will get pumped. You’ll certainly be sweating a lot. Conversely, you can pick up an 85-pound bar, curl it 8 times, then have to drop it because you can’t do any more reps. In both cases, you trained “hard.” But is one approach better than another?

It may surprise you to learn that the answer changes depending on your goal. If you’re looking to get as strong as possible, you’ll be using a heavier weight than someone who is trying to get as big as possible. And to improve muscular endurance, you’ll use an even lighter weight.

• Strength training means choosing weights that allow you to train in a rep range of 1-6.
• Building muscle mean choosing weights that allow you to train in a rep range of 8-12.
• Focusing on muscular endurance means choosing weights that allow you to train for at least 15 reps.

As a senior citizen, I need to lift weights as much as the next guy, but I do not want to break or tear anything. So, I observe the following rule, the weights should not exceed 30 percent to 40 percent of your normal body weight.

The above is NOT Tony about to lift that barbell

Lifting heavy weights compresses the discs of the spine; twisting and turning while lifting or using your back muscles instead of your leg and thigh muscles to lift large, heavy objects can lead to a herniated disk and a lifetime of back pain. If you weigh 150 pounds, you should not exercise with more than 60 pounds of weights because as you age, the spinal discs are not as flexible and the risk of a back injury increases.

I mentioned in previous posts that as a senior citizen, I now do what I call ‘old man’ reps, i.e., half the weight with twice as many reps. The idea behind this is to work and lubricate the connecting tissues as well as to exercise the actual muscle.

Tony

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized, weight-training

Should you grab life by the bells? Science and kettlebells!

Fascinating take on kettle bells, a subject on which my ignorance is nearly pristine.

Tony

Is it healthful?

As I finish my morning run, my eyes become drawn to a group of young and trendies in a circle. They’re swinging what looks like a kettle up and down and I can only presume they must be in a who can damage their back the most contest.  As a physiotherapist and low back pain sufferer, I cringe. No, wrong, I feel physically ill.  I want to intervene, but I fear these kettlebell wielding youths will turn on me. What I do next will shock you!

Yes, I go inside to research kettlebells.

I put in a paragraph there to give you sufficient time to be shocked. Did I come out minutes later with a barrage of scientific evidence to fire at these yucky yuppies? Read on to find out!

kettlebell_gym_motivation_bluetooth_speaker-re82255bf07d8469ba1aa861c61d8b652_zxfks_1024

Kettlebells and exercise performance:

I was certain these kettlebellers were damaging their backs, so I thought I’d have a bit of a gander (look) at what…

View original post 516 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under kettlebells

Why You Should Exercise Regularly – Mayo Clinic

Regular readers know that I feel very strongly about exercising regularly. Eat less; move more is the mantra of this blog. So, I was thrilled to receive a Mayo Clinic Newsletter from Dr. Robert Sheeler, Medical Editor of the Mayo Clinic Health Letter. So many people think about exercise as an adjunct to dieting to lose weight. Wrong. You need to exercise to stay healthy and also to maintain a healthy body and body weight. You don’t stop after you reach your goal weight.

Here’s what the good doctor had to say, “If you exercise regularly, you may lower your risk of a heart attack and stroke. If you are middle-aged or older and haven’t been exercising regularly or have a chronic health problem, work with your doctor to develop an exercise program.

Running at the fitness club

“To condition your heart safely:
•    Start at a comfortable level of exertion — Try walking five to 10 minutes over a short distance indoors. Increase your time by five minutes a session as you’re able.
•    Schedule regular exercise — Aim for 30 to 60 minutes a day of low- to moderate-intensity physical activity.
•    Include variety — Combine three types of exercise — stretching (flexibility), endurance (aerobic or cardio) and strengthening (weight training). Start each session with a warm-up of lower intensity, and cool down gradually. Mind-body exercises, such as yoga and tai chi, may provide even greater benefits.
•    Cross-train to reduce your risk of injury — Alternate among exercises that emphasize different parts of the body, such as swimming, bicycling and walking.
•    Don’t overdue it — Start slowly and build up gradually, allowing time between sessions for your body to rest and recover. And forget the saying “No pain, no gain.” A little muscle soreness when you do something new isn’t unusual, but soreness doesn’t equal pain. If it hurts, stop doing it.
•    Increase your physical activity — Even routine activities such as gardening, climbing stairs or washing floors can burn calories and help improve your health. You’ll get the most benefit from a structured exercise program, but any physical movement helps. Walk or bike to the store instead of driving, park farther away at the shopping mall or take the stairs instead of taking an elevator.”

Want more great health information? Visit the store now to see the latest products from Mayo Clinic doctors, specialists and editorial staff.

Tony

Leave a comment

Filed under Exercise, Mayo Clinic, Mayo Clinic Health Letter

How to Beat Belly Fat – Infographic

A big belly is not just unsightly, it is dangerous to your health. This infographic has some very useful facts if you are a sufferer. I have included at the bottom a list of links to posts from this blog on the dangers of a big belly.

b3b68baa37db48a1b4640b4d3be88917

Weight Training Appears Key to Controlling Belly Fat Study: Smaller Belly, Less Deli May Reduce Kidney Disease Risk, How Dangerous is a Big Belly? What is the Best Exercise to Trim Belly Fat? High-fat and High-sugar Snacks Contribute to Fatty Liver and Abdominal Obesity, Large Waist Linked to Poor Health, Even Among Those in Healthy Body Mass Index Ranges.

Tony

Leave a comment

Filed under belly fat, calories, Exercise

7 Ways to Speed Up Your Metabolism

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that drinking water—about 17 ounces—increases metabolic rate by 30 percent in healthy men and women. The body needs water in order to process calories, so even if you’re mildly dehydrated, your metabolism may wind down. Even on non-training days, you should aim to drink a minimum of 2 or 3 liters of water a day; on days you do workout, amp up that amount depending on the intensity of your activity.

Our Better Health

SpryLiving.com    November 21, 2014

You hit the gym five days a week. You eat all the veggies you can get your hands on. You religiously avoid all white carbs. But in spite of your good intentions, the number on the scale refuses to budge. WTF?!! If this scenario sounds familiar, your metabolism might be to blame. Before you start thinking you’ve been screwed in the genetic lottery, take a deep breath. It’s okay. You can fix this.

First thing’s first. What is metabolism, exactly? After all, it’s a word we hear tossed around a lot in the health world. Your skinny friend who lives solely off junk food credits her thin frame to “a fast metabolism,” but what does that even mean? Is the concept of a fast metabolism scientifically legit, or is it a load of B.S.?

From a purely technical standpoint, metabolism refers to the “chemical processes…

View original post 851 more words

Leave a comment

Filed under BMR, metabolism, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

Strength Training Benefits More Than Muscles – Harvard

While eat less; move more; live longer is the mantra of this blog, I hasten to add that strength training should be an integral part of that move more aspect. Harvard HEALTHbeat  has come out with a new publication on strength and power training.

Here’s what Harvard has to say on the subject: “Most of us know that strength training (with free weights, weight machines, or resistance bands) can help build and maintain muscle mass and strength. What many of us don’t know is that strong muscles lead to strong bones. And strong bones can help minimize the risk of fracture due to osteoporosis.

b-bonedraw

“A combination of age-related changes, inactivity, and poor nutrition conspire to steal bone mass at the rate of 1% per year after age 40. As bones grow more fragile and susceptible to fracture, they are more likely to break after even a minor fall or a far less obvious stress, such as bending over to tie a shoelace.

“Osteoporosis should be a concern for all of us. Eight million women and two million men in the United States have osteoporosis. It is now responsible for more than two million fractures a year, and experts expect that number will rise. Hip fractures are usually the most serious. Six out of 10 people who break a hip never fully regain their former level of independence. Even walking across a room without help may be impossible.”

I have written several posts on osteoporosis. You can read further on the subject here: What Can I do to Prevent Osteoporosis? An Early Sign of Osteoporosis? Are Men Vulnerable to Osteoporosis as Well as Women?

“Numerous studies have shown that strength training can play a role in slowing bone loss, and several show it can even build bone. This is tremendously useful to help offset age-related decline in bone mass. Activities that put stress on bones stimulate extra deposits of calcium and nudge bone-forming cells into action. The tugging and pushing on bone that occur during strength training (and weight-bearing aerobic exercise like walking or running) provide the stress. The result is stronger, denser bones.

“And strength training has bone benefits beyond those offered by aerobic weight-bearing exercise. It targets bones of the hips, spine, and wrists, which, along with the ribs, are the sites most likely to fracture. What’s more, resistance workouts — particularly those that include moves emphasizing power and balance — enhance strength and stability. That can boost confidence, encourage you to stay active, and reduce fractures by cutting down on falls.

“For more information on the benefits of strength training, you can order Strength and Power Training, a Special Health Report from Harvard Medical School.”

Tony

Leave a comment

Filed under bones, Exercise, Harvard

Five Weight Training Tips for Arthritis Sufferers – Harvard

Although I am an avid bicyclist, I also recognize the need for weight training to keep my muscles from shrinking as well as to make my body a fat burning machine by replacing fat with muscle. In addition, as an arthritis sufferer, I have written repeatedly about arthritis and exercise: Yoga for arthritis, What are good exercises for folks with arthritis? and Is it okay to exercise with arthritis?

ATT2315601
So I was happy to see Harvard offering five weight training tips for people with arthritis.
Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under arthritis, Harvard, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

150413 Get strong and stay strong with strength training

17775541-single-dumbbell-used-in-weight-lifting-and-fitness-workouts

Exercising the muscles increases the stress placed on the bones, which in turn makes the bones stronger and less susceptible to fracturing. Resistance training also helps increase the fat burning capability of the body due to the more active muscle tissue in relation to fat. If you are a senior and concerned about lifting weights, check out Weight-training Techniques for Seniors.

Explosivelyfit Strength Training

Get strong and stay strong with strength training

It would appear, from a casual glance at the magazines in the stores that aerobics is a panacea for all the health problems existing in our country. Well it does sell magazines, but is it true?

Certainly participating in aerobic activity plays an important part in accomplishing and then maintaining a certain level of good health. However, lifting weights or sandbags, using resistance bands, and body weight calisthenics are important to anyone who wants to preserve or increase their lean muscle mass.

We are not talking about showboat muscles. We are talking about muscles that are necessary to help lead an active daily life. Having a strong upper body, midsection, and lower body helps delay the frequent muscle weaknesses that automatically come with age.

Exercising the muscles increases the stress placed on the bones, which in turn makes the bones stronger and…

View original post 166 more words

2 Comments

Filed under aging, chia seeds, Exercise, healthy living, Weight, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

Can a Vitamin Help Reduce My Waistline?

A recent study indicated that a vitamin supplementation plan was effective in reducing waist measurements. The journal Clinical Nutrition reported on a study including 23 overweight and obese individuals, who all completed 12 weeks of resistance training. Half of the participants received 4,000 International Units (IU) of Vitamin D. The other half took a placebo. Analysis indicated an inverse relationship between the change in Vitamin D status and the change in waist-to-hip ratio.

vitamin-d
They said, “”The results of the current study demonstrated that vitamin D supplementation improved muscular power in healthy overweight and obese individuals within four weeks and that elevated vitamin D status was associated with greater losses in waist circumference, with no additional benefits in lean mass accumulation, muscular strength, or glucose tolerance during participation in a 12-week resistance exercise training program.
Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Exercise, health, Vitamin D, Weight, weight-bearing exercise, weight-training

Add Weight Work to Your Cardio Exercise

As I said in About Me and elsewhere on the blog, I love to ride my bike and burn up calories, but don’t do very well on the weight work and building lean muscle mass. Usually, I get to the health club when the snow and ice comes in winter here in Chicago and I am no longer able to navigate my bicycle outdoors. But, when winter conditions start to dissolve, so does my interest in health club workouts. Weight no longer has been the rule.

I no longer think about a club visit like a kid having to eat his veggies

This year, however, I have resolved to continue to work out with weights even when I can ride my bike every day.

Tuesday is a good example. I rode 20 miles in the morning, ate, walked the dog and then went to the health club instead of going back out on the bike.

My new workout consists of five minutes on the rowing machine to get my heart started. I considered my roughly 2 hour bike ride as my cardio instead of 30 minutes on the rower.

Then I do three sets of my three ‘big muscle’ exercises. These include leg presses, lat pull downs and chest presses on a machine.

On the one hand these are the same exercises I did when I lost 50 pounds in 52 weeks. However, with my new information about senior workouts cutting down on the actual weights and increasing the reps to benefit the tendons and ligaments, I am no longer finished in 15 minutes as before.

I just did a workout and it lasted 45 minutes including the 5 on the rower.

The fact that I am still doing weight work two months after the start of winter has had an interesting side effect. I find my shirts slightly tighter and my pants a little looser. Not a bad thing.

Tony

Leave a comment

Filed under aging, Exercise, life challenges, Weight, weight-training