Through many years and many levels of fitness and healthy living, there is one thing that has been essential to me.
Eating well, exercise, sufficient sleep all work together and can always be tweaked for proportion and increase.
A recent article highlighted one of my favourite tools, strength training. My fitness routine incorporates hand held weights and I love the benefit they give, added strength, increasing endurance and results of toned muscles.
To build a healthier body, you need a strong foundation that can withstand the aging process.
It’s never too late to create new habits. Strength training for many people isn’t as fun as walking, spin class, yoga or playing sports. But it’s hard to deny the short- and long-term benefits of hitting the weights, including:
- Increased bone density
- Stronger ligaments and tendons
The best way to build strength is by doing compound exercises, which recruit multiple joints through a full range of motion and engage the most muscle mass. Squats, shoulder presses and deadlifts are favorite compound exercises. These are functional moves that are easy to learn and can be done with dumbbells or barbells. You are in no way limited to just these three exercises or to dumbbells and barbells; these are often preferred methods to build strength.
This doesn't mean you have to hit the gym for hours every day to incorporate strength training. My current routine is 3 days of a 15 minute workout with weights (while watching the early morning weather report) and I try for one day of an exercise class.
If you are looking to begin or bump up your fitness, this is a great place to start!