When people think of muscle and strength training for a healthy life, they might think of expert body builders. Looking like a body builder is not the reality or the desire for the masses. For the average person, however, building muscles and strength training is a major component to healthy living.
The way to grow muscles is to continually challenge them with more resistance and weight. The cycle to grow muscles can easily be described as tear, rest and grow. Muscles can’t grow unless they rip or tear first. Strenuous workouts cause muscles to breakdown. The body repairs damaged fibers which increases the size of the muscles. The downtime between strength training is when your body has the chance to build that new muscle. This rest allow bodies to build back up. Gaining muscles is a process and is accomplished over time.
Muscle atrophy occurs most often from lack of activity for an extended period of time. Muscles begin to shrink with lack of use. To fight against this, one needs to lift weights weekly. The research says that training a minimum of two to three days per week is needed to maximize muscle growth.
Strength training may enhance your quality of life and improve your ability to do everyday activities:
- Building muscle can contribute to better balance and may reduce your risk of falls which is important especially as you grow older.
- Muscle mass naturally decreases with age, but strength training can help reverse the trend. Lifting weights at any age is beneficial.
- Strength training increases bone density, this in turn reduces the risk of fractures.
- Building muscles helps joints stay flexible and can reduce the symptoms of arthritis.
- Strength training can also build up your heart muscle.
The bottom line is that strength training appears to provide benefits to everyday life. Strengthen your muscles by incorporating muscle and strength training into your weekly routine.