Top 10 Reasons Why Strength Training Is Benefitial In Long Term
Strength training has mostly been associated with bodybuilding, losing body fat, muscle gains, and with sports athletes. Recent studies published in Harvard Health suggest that strength training also helps to ward off chronic diseases.
Does strength training have any other benefits other than building muscle? Well, strength training not only helps in losing weight to look good and stay in shape, but also helps in fighting chronic diseases like heart disease, brain damage, diabetes, and cancer. In this article, we explore the top 10 reasons why strength training is beneficial in long term. Let’s start by exploring what is strength training first?
What Is Strength Training?
Strength training is the training of muscles by lifting weights to introduce compression and expansion movements. According to Well & Good, there are different types of strength trainings:
- Muscular Hypertrophy: A physical training which uses moderate-to-heavy weights to stimulate muscle growth.
- Muscular Endurance: A physical training which aims to raise endurance level of muscles. This training type uses light weights with higher reps.
- Circuit Training: This is a full-body conditioning training where you cycle through various exercises with little to no rest between them.
- Maximum Muscular Hypertrophy: This type of training is aimed at muscle building but involves heavy weights with low reps.
- Explosive power: A physical training which combines both weights and speed to improve power output. This training is mainly for athletes to improve their output in the sport they are playing.
Questions may arise for several people like ‘Do I really need strength training?’. After all, not all of us are pro athletes or not all of us aim to build muscle for bodybuilding purposes. To answer that question, let’s now shift the focus on why strength training is beneficial in the long term:
10 Reasons Why Strength Training Is Benefitial In Long Term
1. Burns Calories
Strength training helps in burning calories. By working out with weights, muscles are put to work and body fat is used as energy to recover these muscles. How much muscle you will gain depends on the diet being consumed. So if your goal is to not gain too much muscle, you can control that by your diet.
2. Decreases Visceral Fat
Visceral fat is the most dangerous fat deposists in our body. They cover the organs in the abdominal area and are major causes of diseases like diabetes, heart attacks etc.
Related: 3 Ways To Know If You Have Visceral Fat Or Not.
3. Improves Heart Health
Several studies have shown that strength training improves blood pressure, and lowers bad cholestrol in the body thereby improving heart health.
4. Helps Manage Blood Sugar Levels
Studies have shown that strength training helps in reducing blood sugar levels by removing glucose from the blood and sending it to muscle cells. As a result, greater muscle mass can help improve blood sugar management.
5. Boosts Metabolism
Metabolism is the process of chemical reactions in the body that change food into energy. By strength or resistance training the body is able to metobolise the food into energy more efficiently.
6. Improves Brain Health
According to a publication by the University of Sydney, strength training can help protect the brain from degeneration and may help slow down and even halt degeneration, over a long period, in brain areas particularly vulnerable to Alzheimer’s disease.
7. Reduces Anxiety
Strength training also helps in improving mental health. By performing some kind of physical activity, it is observed that overall mental health improves. Over time, regular exercise remodels the reward system, leading to higher circulating levels of dopamine and more available dopamine receptors.
8. Promotes Discipline
While we all like to have fun once in a while, there is no denying the fact that a disciplined lifestyle is what we all must strive for. A disciplined lifestyle helps in maintaining focus to the things we’d like to achieve and get us closer to our goals. ImpossibleHQ observes that, by having a workout routine and coupling it with good nutrition improves focus and makes you more disciplined.
9. Strong Bones
Multiple studies have shown, bones are inert structures in human body, they continue to evolve during our lifetime depending on the lifestyle chouices we make. Weight-training exercises put temporary stress on bones, sending a message to bone-building cells to take action and rebuild bones stronger.
10. Improves Range Of Motion
Physical activity involving weight training has proved to improve range of motion (ROM), flexibility, and mobility. A recent study was published that compared stretching with strength training and the results found they were equally effective at increasing flexibility and ROM.