There are some great health benefits for weight lifting, many people head straight for the treadmills or exercise machines and spend their whole time just doing cardiovascular work, not realising the huge benefits that weight lifting (resistance training) can give.
A number of research articles have shown that regular weightlifting has many positive effects for you at any age male or female.
Heres our 5 health benefits of weight lifting for you!
All forms of exercise require you to spend some of your energy, the energy you are burning during exercise is measured in calories. The more you are exercising the more calories you are burning. Most of you will have some stored fat in your bodies, unwanted fat you certainly don’t like the look of.
It is this fat you can target by increasing your exercise. It will help you to reduce stored body fat and in turn lose some kgs.
The awesome thing about lifting weights is a little term known as the afterburn, and this effect lasts longer with weight training than any other exercise. It increases the amount of energy expended during your workout, it also helps speed up your metabolism after you’ve finished your training session.
An elevated metabolism means you’re going to be burning calories up to 36hoursa after your workout…Now that’s cool, we like the afterburn effect!
2-More “ZZZZZZ” at Bedtime
Taking up regular exercise not only improves the quality of your sleep, research also shows we sleep for longer too. As little as 10 minutes of exercise a day can dramatically help improve your quality of sleep.
“Early morning and afternoon exercise may also help reset the sleep-wake cycle by raising body temperature slightly, then allowing it to drop and trigger sleepiness a few hours later,” says Micheal J Breus, PhD thesleepdoctor.com
Choosing the right time to exercise can have an impact on your sleep. Training late at night might be a bad idea for some as it could overstimulate the body. If you’re going to train at night at least try to do it a few hours before bed, not straight before.
Our deep sleep is very important to us. There’s been a ton of research suggesting that physical exercise helps us with deep sleep, deep sleep helps to boost immune function, support cardiac health, and control stress and anxiety.
3-Less Flabby More Toned!
Weight lifting can give you a more toned look as it basically helps reduce the stored fat in the body and increase your muscle mass, the more muscle tissue you add through weightlifting the higher your resting metabolic rate, also known as your “basle metabolic rate,” the higher this is the more fat you will burn even when you’re fast asleep.
Our muscles require a constant supply of energy to function. If you are working hard on your workouts your muscles will still be working hard for a period of time afterwards, burning calories to regenerate.
Weightlifting to tone doesn’t necessarily mean high repetitions and low weight as a lot of people mistake, remember your muscle still needs to be stressed and shocked in order to grow.
For a toned look generally, you need between 10-15 reps and shorter resting periods. By the shorter resting periods you will help keep your heart rate up and this will keep your metabolic rate up too.
4-Helps Strengthen Bones & Increases Bone Density
As we get older our bone density starts to decrease, our diets change and we tend to do less exercise. Each year that passes our bodies take longer to create new bone leading to conditions such as osteoporosis, how depressing. But good news!! Weight training regularly can help. ” Regular weight training places small amounts of stress on the bones which actually helps to strengthen them over time,” says Kristoph Thompson M.A Training coach.
Think of it like this, you are working out, the muscles you’re using produce force, pushing through your bones to create movement. This force results in microscopic damage to the bones that has to be prepared. Kristoph goes on to say the body overcompensates for this, leading to stronger denser bones and decreased risk of osteoporosis.
As well as getting old there are other high-risk groups who may suffer from weakening bones, post menopausal slim women have the highest rates of osteoporosis mainly because their estrogen levels start to decrease when their periods stop. Another good reason for young women to start weight training early: start to increase your bone density now and you will be much less likely to encounter any problems later in life.
Weight training is not the only way to increase your bone density, vitamin D, calcium and stopping smoking will increase the chances of not suffering from osteoporosis.
5-Helps You Perform Better In Sport
Most sports demand a certain amount of weight training… How does it help?
- Weight training helps to increase strength and power which are essential in many sports for a successful performance.
- It helps correct differences between different muscle groups, reducing risk of injury.
- Being strong gives the athlete a foundation to improve explosive power.
Although strength training can be very beneficial to most sports, it is important to remember it is part of a training schedule. Unlike a body builder, a sportsman will often mimic movements that are completed in sports. Each sport has specific movements and exercise, strength training can assist in helping you make gains in your chosen specific sport but will most likely only be included as part of an overall training schedule.
I hope a few of these benefits has persuaded you it might be a good idea to get hold of a set of dumbbells and have a try at home. If you are really short of cash try eBay for a used set. Not only is weight training great for your physical health it makes you feel awesome too. As your body shape starts to improve it will give your confidence and self-esteem a boost, relishing those feel-good hormones.
I’m sure you can spare 20-30 minutes a few times a week, can’t you?