Why women should strength train in midlife
Do you want to feel strong, empowered and confident?
Do you want to beat those annoying menopause symptoms?
You may be reluctant to go to the gym and lift some weights – it can be quite daunting when the free-weight section is still a very male dominated area of the gym and there’s also the misconception that you’ll end up bulky. BUT, us women NEED to strength train, particularly as go past 30!
So why is it important to strength train?
It’s important for our muscles – it can boost your metabolism and help you lose fat
Our muscles need to be strong to be able to do regular day to day activity (movements requiring lifting, reaching, pushing, pulling). Having these strong muscles reduces the chance of injury, improves your body tone, allows you to recover from exercise quickly and overall makes you more powerful!
As we age (from age 30) those muscles reduce in size and strength. By having lean muscle mass our metabolism is better fired up, so with any decrease, we run the risk of weight gain as our metabolism gets sluggish!
By doing workouts that incorporate resistance training (and it doesn’t need to be super heavy dumbbells and barbells – it can be bodyweight), you’ll increase those muscle fibres, slowing that ageing process.
It’s important for bones – it can reduce risk of injury and oestoporosis
But it’s not just our muscles that are affected but our bones. Again, sorry to say it but bone density also decreases as we age. To keep strong healthy bones and reduce fracture risk we need to stimulate the bones to keep re-building and this is done by adding load (resistance).
It’s important for wellbeing – it can de-stress
A good workout will relax us. The changes in our hormones around the menopause mean we tend not to cope with stress as well as before. Working out releases endorphins, making us feel much better. Many women also suffer with feelings of inadequacy and lack confidence in their abilities, so being able to lift weights (and seeing how we progress) gives us more control and feelings of achievement.
And that’s not it:
It can help strengthen and protect our heart and reduce risk of heart disease – lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol
It improves the way we process sugar and therefore can reduce the risk of diabetes
A well planned programme done with good form with improve your posture
And don’t worry if you’re way over 30 and never really worked out. All is not lost! You can start your strength training journey at any time and you will still see these benefits.
If you’re younger, then get started now, so your body is prepared and ready!
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