If you’re looking for the perfect method to keep you healthy, fit and young, then weight training could be your answer.
For many, the fight to keep your body fit and healthy is as important as its bonus effect of keeping you youthful. After all, with a healthy body comes eternal youth, or at least extended youth. A recent study showed that those who build muscle and eat a considerable amount of protein actually ward off sarcopenia, a process primarily responsible for a loss in muscle mass and strength as one ages. This condition affects one in three people over the age of 50.
This article will go over a few methods to fend off this condition as well as offer up a few exercise ideas that you can incorporate today.
As its name might suggest, weight training is focused on building muscle mass. This form of exercise, often called resistance exercise, is performed by contracting the muscles and can be done regardless of age or fitness level. Athletes or those just looking to improve their muscle mass can all begin resistance exercise. Some may just need to start with smaller weights than others. However, everyone can do it, which is what makes resistance exercise such an excellent method to maintain fitness, health and youthfulness.
There’s also an emphasis placed on the consumption of protein. As one ages, it may be more difficult to digest protein from meat. However, there are tons of protein shakes out there that can replace meat protein. With this protein in hand, you can complement your workout and really start to build that muscle mass and extend youthfulness.
To get you started on your own resistance exercise and on the path toward looking younger, here are three exercises that you can perform regardless of your age or fitness level.
You may be surprised to know that the push-up, that thing you were forced to do in the gym at high school, is still relevant to your health even now. It’s also a great way to start building upper arm strength. While you may feel pressured to start right off with equipment at your local gym, you can actually start in the comfort of your own home with regular push-ups.
First, place your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart on the floor. Extend your legs behind you and carry your weight on your arms as much as you can. Lower your body down toward the floor, hold for two seconds and then push yourself back up. Make sure that you keep your back and legs straight throughout the movements. Beginning with 25 reps is good for beginners, but be sure that you repeat it a few times, otherwise you won’t be doing much for yourself. For a modified version the legs can be brought in and you may balance on the knees instead of extending your legs out behind you into a bridge position.
2. Bench Press
After you’ve built a bit of muscle with push-ups, you may want to consider the bench press. This can be done at home as well, provided you have dumbbells or something with weight to it, such as cans of soup, and something smooth to lay down on for comfort. Lay back and grasp your dumbbells or weights so they are slightly wider than shoulder-width. Lower the weights to your chest, then push back up. Keep your back arched as you bring the dumbbells down. When pushing up, dig your feet into the floor. Throughout the movement, keep your elbows tucked. As you develop more muscle, you can add additional weight.
3. Lying Tricep Extension
Another exercise you can perform at home to work your triceps is the lying tricep extension. Similar to the bench press, lay down on your back on a smooth surface. Take your dumbbells and hold them above your face. Then extend them backward until they are behind your head. After that, move them back upwards, so they are above your face once more.
With these beginner exercises, you can work toward additional fitness goals to help maintain your health and youth.