While cardio helps build stamina and lose fat, your body needs something more – something like strength training. Over the years, millions of people have engaged themselves in strength training and attained multiple physical and mental health benefits. If you are considering investing in some weights or hiring a strength trainer, it’s completely worth it. Strength training is also known as weight resistance. This is a physical activity to improve your muscular fitness. Strength training movements target a specific group of muscles through resistance.
From weights to resistance bands and other weight machines help you perform these exercises. Of course, the weight you decide to lift depends on your fitness level. It’s beneficial to use dumbbells with different weights. You can purchase MAGMA rubber hex dumbbell sets from MAGMA Fitness in different sizes. We recommend purchasing a dumbbell rack so you have somewhere to store your dumbbells.
Types of Strength Training
There are two significant types of strength training:
This type of strength training involves muscle contraction against immobile objects.
This type of strength training includes muscle contraction with mobile mediums of resistance like dumbbells.
Benefits of Strength Training
Other than helping you get Instagrammable selfies and a passion for lifting, there are some other benefits of strength training that you must know about:
Strength Training Helps You Get Stronger and Physically Fitter
This is one of the most obvious benefits, but most people often neglect it. A lot of people think that strength training is only to bulk up – you couldn’t be more wrong. Strength training is called resistance training because you are toning and strengthening your muscles by applying an external force. This helps you become stronger and develop more stamina over the years. Strength training also makes you more fit because people lose more inches than regular cardio sessions.
Strength Training Maintains Muscle Mass and Protects Bones
As you age, your physical fitness starts to decline. At around 30 years of age, people start losing 5% of their muscle mass. If there is no activity in life, the condition can worsen and decline pretty quickly. Fortunately, we have strength training. According to a recent study, strength training for 30 to 45 minutes 3 days a week can improve your bone density, muscle mass, and bone structure. These activities are essential to maintain muscle and joint health as you age. Just make sure that you are focusing on your nutrition as well. For example, a lot of people feel weak after a 30-minute lifting session. Healthcare experts recommend that a person should eat sufficient calories every day for best results.
Strength Training Helps In Weight Management
In the USA, a lot of people suffer from eating disorders, weight management, and other complications associated with their physical wellbeing. Whether you are obese or underweight, strength training can actually help you manage weight. Strength training will help you lose weight or gain muscle mass with regular sessions, and a good diet will boost your metabolism. Increased metabolism is beneficial in burning more calories.
Weight resistance can also help you burn more calories even after the workout. For people who are not able to enjoy the quality of life because of being underweight, strength training will help you build muscle mass which contributes to a healthy weight gain. Don’t forget to buy healthy items like flavored cashews because you will be concentrating a lot on a diet.
Strength Training Improves Body Mechanics
Strength exercise improves your balance, coordination, and posture as well. One study found that strength training reduced the risk of falling and causing significant damage in older people who were at a higher risk of falling (and causing substantial damage) due to poor physical functioning by 40% when compared to individuals who did not engage in strength-training exercise. Balance is determined by the strength of the muscles that hold you upright. The more powerful those muscles are, the better your balance will be.
Different Strength Training Exercises
There are different kinds of strength training exercises that a person can include in their daily life.
Body Weight Strength Training
For novice and beginner trainers, it is always a good idea to start with their body weight. Some basic strength training and resistance movements are:
- Push-ups (3 x 15)
- Squats (3 x 20)
- Lunges (3 x 20)
- Plank (60 seconds)
- Wall sit (60 seconds)
Strength Training With Weights
As you build stamina, it will become easier to lift weights and add extra weights (dumbbells) to the routine. You can add weights to the exercises mentioned above, but specific other exercises can make the routine even longer and challenge your body. Here are these movements:
- Bench Press (3 x 15)
- Bicep Curls (3 x 15)
- Calf Raises (3 x 15)
- Tricep Kickback (3 x 15)
- Lateral Raise (3 x 15)
Resistance Bands Training
Resistance bands are an affordable yet effective way to add extra resistance to your routine. Unlike dumbbells, resistance bands are easy to use and can be used by seniors as well. All the above exercises can be practiced with resistance bands, but here are a few extras:
- One Arm Bicep Curl (3 x 15)
- Fly (3 x 15)
- Side-Lying Hip Abduction (3 x 15)
- Glute Bridge (3 x 15)
- Splitter (3 x 15)
Also see: How to improve sitting posture
Tips to Consider When Strength Training
Here are some important tips that you must consider before starting strength training:
Always start with 5 to 10 minutes of warm-up. Your warm-up routine must consist of various stretching exercises for flexibility and warming up those muscles. There are a lot of stretching exercises available on the internet.
It is critical to use proper techniques. If you are unsure if you are performing an exercise correctly, take advice from a professional physical trainer.
Maintain a proper body balance and proper posture while training. A change in your posture or too many different movements can actually end up injuring you.
Maintain a healthy diet and eat enough good calories to stay energetic throughout the routine. Unprocessed fats and carbs, healthy protein, and green vegetables are a must-have. Other than those, you always have the option to include protein shakes. Consider ordering bulk cashews (an all-rounder in terms of nutrients right now if you plan to start strength training. If you are planning to bulk up, eat more carbs. If you want leaner muscles, eat more protein.
Women can lift up from 2 to 15 lbs. Men can lift from 10 lbs. to 55 lbs.
Breathe normally. Instead of holding your breath, inhale on the more accessible part of the movement and release your breath on the more challenging part. It may take a while to get there, but as you practice more, the routine becomes easier.
Wear proper gym attire (even if you are at home). To execute a strength training session, you must focus on dressing in a way that supports the movements. Go for sweatpants, proper sports bras, and trainers.
After an exercise, muscles require time to recover and develop. A decent rule of thumb is to wait at least 24 hours before exercising the same muscle group again.
Strength training is extremely beneficial for your physical and mental wellbeing. If you want to start an effective routine, make sure to build your way up. A lot of people start from bodyweight and continue to add more weights as they progress. Your diet also matters a lot. Consider adding healthy calories to your diet.