I Know most of you have heard how beneficial weight training can be. Everyone preaches about the benefits of what it can do for you, yet I still see people focussing only on cardio and not enough time on weights. I can’t stress enough the importance of weight training. I have written many short posts before on what weights and resistance training can do for you, so I thought why not put it into a blog and dive in a little deeper to benefits and myths. I could write a huge list of different things but I will try not to get to carried away.
Okay let’s tackle some myths first. For everyone who says, “I don’t want to get muscular like a bodybuilder or a man so I don’t want to lift heavy”, truth is you won’t get anywhere near that. It is so hard to gain muscle believe me I know. I train intensely 5-6 days a week in a calorie surplus and still don’t look like those guys you see in magazines. Next time you’re in the gym look around at everyone who is lifting weights and tell me how many people you see who look this way, my guess is majority don’t look like that. This look takes years and years of consistent training, eating a calorie surplus and steroid use is a lot more common than you think. Women you don’t have the testosterone in your bodies to achieve this look it won’t happen, but what will happen is you will build a strong well defined and toned body.
Another myth is the phrase “I don’t want to build muscle I just want to tone” there is no such thing as toning, only building muscle. Building muscle is THE only way to shape and tone your body. Think about it like this, if you have soft jiggly arms now that’s because you have more fat than muscle. To be able to “tone” them you need to add lean muscle to firm that area up. As you build the muscle, shape starts to take place to your body and that’s when your body starts to look more defined.
Okay so now diving into the benefits of weight training. Variation- a great benefit in weights is the vast variety of all the different exercises you can do, I can think of 18 different exercises off the top of my head right now just for glutes. Each of these exercises also have many variations in execution. That’s just one muscle group, how many ways can you run on a treadmill or ski on a cross-trainer? The vast variety helps prevent boredom and helps challenge your body with new exciting exercises to try out.
Resistance training is the only you can shape and add muscle, along with this added muscle comes strength. Who wouldn’t want to feel stronger and find daily activities such as carrying the shopping bags, lifting heavy objects off the floor or being able to lift and play with your kid easier? How would you feel to find daily activities easier than you do now? My guess is fantastic.
There are numerous health benefits that resistance training can provide along with studies to back them all up. Adding lean muscle to your body, you are protecting and strengthening all your muscles, tendons and joints, reducing your risk from injuries. Once you reach 30 years old every decade after that you lose around 5% muscle mass meaning you burn less calories than you previously did. This will lead to increased fat to muscle ratio and your bones and joints are now weaker than they were before which can lead to osteoporosis later in life. Through resistance training you can also prevent or control chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, back pain, depression and obesity. This list goes on and on but I think you get the picture from these points.
Mental benefits also come hand in hand with resistance training. I have worked with many people who have suffered with anxiety and self-confidence issue’s. After becoming stronger and more defined their mood completely changes. They are now more confident with themselves and their general mood has greatly improved from this new found of energy, lack of tiredness and increased strength they now have. Imagine being less tired, having more strength and
being happier due to better confidence and self-esteem all whilst having all the other benefits from up above and all you must do is introduce resistance training into your routine 2-3 times a week.
However, this isn’t a short-term fix, you cannot stop lifting weights after a month and then expect to reap all these benefits. Chances are for the first month or 2 you may feel a bit tired and sore due to exercising but I promise if you stick with it for a long period of time and make it part of your life you will reap these benefits and more.
There we have the many benefits on why training with weights is important, I hope you have learned something and enjoyed reading this blog.
Thanks for reading and train smart :)