Get Stronger, Leaner, Healthier And Happier With Strength Training

“Consistency of practice is the secret to success. Consistency of practice is the secret to success. Consistency of practice is the secret to success.”

Whoever you are; you need this! Strength training is a vital component of  your overall fitness program. (How many times have you heard me say this?) It’s always worth repeating! Let’s review what strength training can do for you. Don’t wait – Start lifting today!

Most of you reading this already understand the importance of strength and resistance training and it’s place in your weekly fitness line-up. Ideally, you’re always looking for ways to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine. If your cardio workouts aren’t balanced by a proper dose of strength training, though, you’re missing out on a key ingredient of overall health and fitness. Despite its reputation for causing women to look beefed up and bulky (clearly a myth), strength training is important for everyone. Done properly, incorporating a regular strength training program into your week you can reduce your body fat, increase your lean muscle mass (contrary to a bulky appearance) and burn calories more efficiently. Let’s not forget – improved mood, feeling and being stronger, more energetic and CONFIDENT about your ability to perform daily tasks and less injury prone. I genuinely love seeing my clients smiling, accomplished faces following a workout which always includes WEIGHT TRAINING! I’d be hard pressed to find something that empowers a woman more than a successful weight training workout!

Like it or not: Use it or lose it!

Muscle mass naturally diminishes with age. “If you don’t do anything to replace the lean muscle you lose, you’ll increase the percentage of fat in your body,” says Edward Laskowski, M.D., a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., and co-director of the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center. “But strength training can help you preserve and enhance your muscle mass – at any age.”

Strength Training also helps you:

1. Develop strong bones. By stressing your bones, strength training increases bone density and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.

2. Control your weight. As you gain muscle, your body gains a bigger “engine” to burn calories more efficiently – which can result in weight loss. The more toned your muscles, the easier it is to control your weight.

3. Reduce your risk of injury. Building muscle helps protect your joints from injury. It also contributes to better balance, which can help you maintain independence as you age.

4. Boost your stamina. As you get stronger, you won’t fatigue as easily.

5. Manage chronic conditions. Strength training can reduce the signs and symptoms of many chronic conditions, including arthritis, back pain, depression, diabetes, obesity and osteoporosis.

5. Sharpen your focus. Some research suggests that regular strength training helps improve attention for older adults.

Strength training can be done at home or in the gym. Consider the options:

Body weight. You can do many exercises with little or no equipment. Try push-ups, pull-ups, core strengthening exercises and squats and lunges.

Resistance tubing. Resistance tubing/bands is inexpensive, lightweight tubing provides resistance when stretched. You can choose from many types of resistance tubes or bands in nearly any sporting goods store.

Free weights. Barbells, dumbbells and kettle bells are classic strength training tools.

Weight machines. Most fitness centers offer various resistance machines. You can also invest in weight machines for use at home.

Start Pushing, Pulling & Lifting

1. Once you have your doctors blessings to begin a strength training program, start slow and smart! If possible, find a personal trainer, teacher, class or DVD for proper guidance!

2. Always warmup for 5-10 minutes with light aerobic activity. Walking or biking are great choices.

3. Select a weight or resistance level heavy enough to fatigue your muscles after 12 repetitions. “On the 12th repetition, you should be just barely able to finish the motion,” Dr. Laskowski says.”  ”When you’re using the proper weight or amount of resistance, you can build and tone muscle just as efficiently with a single set or 12 repetitions as you can with more sets of the same exercise.”

4. Please, don’t do too much during your first workout! If you’re new to strength training, perform one set of 12 repetitions for each muscle group for your first few sessions. Give your muscles and joints a chance to get used to the new movement and muscle load. In the following weeks of your strength workout you can add additional sets.

5.  Give your muscles time to recover by resting a full day for each specific muscle group. For example: if you train your biceps on Monday, don’t hit them again until Wednesday.

6. When you can easily do 15 reps of a certain exercise, gradually increase the weight or resistance. Remember to STOP if you feel pain. Although mild muscle soreness is normal, sharp pain, swollen and sore joints are not. Be a careful doer, not an over-doer!

When will I see results?

Too much of a good thing, may soon enough become, not so good! You don’t need to spend endless hours and days in the gym to benefit from strength training. Two to three sessions a week lasting 20 to 30 minutes are sufficient for most people. If you are committed and consistent with your training you may notice improvements in your strength and stamina in just a few weeks. With regular strength training, you’ll continue to increase your strength! Strength training can and will do wonders for your physical and emotional well-being. Make it part of your quest for a healthier and happier life!

Remember: You will only get stronger and healthier by trying and doing the work!

Questions? Please contact me at  I’m always here to help you!

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  1. loved that info. thanks for reconfirming all that you have taught me

  2. Thanks Allison for the extra motivation! I have the cardio going strong now need to add the strength training. You are a fantastic role model for the rest of us!

    • Beth- You may want to consider keeping a set of dumbbells in your office. Pick up your weights for 5 minutes at a time. This is a great way to sneak resistance training into your day! Good Luck!

  3. Nice!! Great Ifo. Great People. Great Blog. Thank you for all the great sharing that is being done here.

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