I thought all of this information from The Women’s Health Big Book of Exercises was a great reminder, so I wanted to pass it along. We know strength training is extremely important for many reasons such as building stronger bones and burning more calories than doing cardio alone, but what are the ‘unexpected’ results of strength training that we wouldn’t usually think of right away?!
Here are a few:
- You’ll sleep better: Lifting hard helps you rest easier. Australian researchers observed that patients who performed three total body weight workouts a week for 8 weeks experienced a 23% improvement in sleep quality. In fact, the study participants were able to fall asleep faster and slept longer than before they started lifting weights!
- You’ll get in shape faster: A study at the University of Hawaii found that circuit training with weights raises your heart rate 15 beats per minute higher than does running at 60 to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate. According to the researchers, this approach not only strengthens your muscles, it also provides cardiovascular benefits similar to those of aerobic exercise.
- You’ll add years to your life: Get strong to live long. (I love that phrase!) University of South Carolina researchers determined that total body strength was linked to lower risks of death from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and all causes. Similarly, University of Hawaii scientists found that being strong at middle age was associated with “exceptional survival,” defined as living until 85 without developing a major disease.
These are just great reminders of why strength training in addition to cardio is important. Using both lighter and heavier weights is good. As women, we won’t bulk….we will become stronger, more toned and fit!
Have a great evening and enjoy this beautiful weather!