I've often asked my friends if they include regular resistance/weight training in their weekly exercise routines. Not all, but many of them reply; "I don’t want to bulk up and have massive muscles". There's a common misperception that resistance training will leave you looking like hulk. But to gain that amount of muscle it would require untold dedication, huge weights and hours of intensive weight training and eating! There are actually so many worthwhile reasons to include resistance training in your exercise routine - here's 5 of them.
What is Resistance Training?
There are two types of resistance training - Isometric resistance and Isotonic. Isometric exercises work by contracting your muscles against a non-moving object (e.g. Floor). Examples of this would be push-ups and planks. Isotonic strength training works by forcing your muscles to contract through a range of motion (e.g. weight lifting).
5 Reasons to Include Resistance Training in Your Exercise Routine
New to resistance training? Wondering how it can benefit you? Here are 5 reasons to include resistance training in your exercise routine.
1. Resistance training is a great way to burn calories and reduce body fat
A recent study conducted by Harvard indicated that a 30 minute session can burn on average 90 calories. Your body also burns extra calories after your resistance session to repair and maintain your muscle mass. In short, you will increase your metabolism, thus increasing the amount of calories consumed by your body.
2. Hitting the weights will help to keep weight off
Some studies suggest that women and men who perform three resistance training sessions per week not only maintained their ideal weight, they also burned more calories when conducting their daily activities on non-training days. In simple terms, the more muscle you have, the more calories your body burns.
3. It supports healthy bones and muscle mass
As we age, we lose around 1% of our muscle mass and bone density every year after puberty. Many of us are now working in office jobs where the physical demands on our muscle and bones is non-existent. This can lead to our bones and muscles becoming extremely weak, resulting in poor posture and it also increases the risk of injury. Regular sessions of resistance training can help to maintain and improve your bone density, muscle mass and strength.
4. It helps to improve overall physical performance
Another reason to include resistance training in your exercise routine is it helps overall physical performance. The rewards of including regular strength training into your exercise routine are great. Whether you’re a runner, footballer, golfer, swimmer or walker, when you increase your overall strength, it improves your body’s ability to perform other activities and helps to reduce the risk of injury. Resistance exercises can also help to improve your balance and coordination.
5. You will look great and feel better
After completing a resistance training session your body releases endorphins to reward you for all that hard work! This will help to improve your mood and increase your overall well-being. Regular resistance training sessions will also tone your muscles and help to improve your posture.
If you are new to resistance training, please ask someone to show you how to perform the exercises correctly. Remember to start off slow and to build on your progress gradually.
Please note, this blog is for informational purposes only and should not replace medical advice.
It’s always best to consult your doctor before taking any new supplements, treatments or remedies if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or on medication.
Checked and updated: 15 September 2021