Most people think of weight training just as a way to build beach-worthy muscles. While it’s true that you’ll look more impressive in swimwear, the older you get, the more important it is to your health and future potential for independent living. Weight training for people over 50 is just as important as cardio or flexibility training. Once you pass your mid-30s, unless you work at it, your muscles start to atrophy. It occurs in most people as they age and is called sarcopenia.
Sarcopenia causes a 3 to 5% loss of muscle mass every ten years. It’s often why seniors look frail. Once you get past the age of 30, unless you participate in training, you start to lose muscle mass. It’s called sarcopenia and causes a three to five percent loss every decade. When you see seniors that look frail, it’s often just the natural progression of sarcopenia. Sarcopenia can also lead to osteoporosis. When muscles tug on the bone, it stimulates the bone to uptake more calcium to reinforce them so they can resist breaking. It also increases bone-forming cell activation. If you lack exercise and strong muscles, there’s no need for reinforcing the bones and they start to thin and become brittle, leading to osteoporosis. It’s a reason that all seniors, especially women, should exercise.
At one time, smoking was the number one single cause of preventable deaths, but today, worldwide, obesity has become an epidemic. It can lead to serious conditions, like high blood pressure, or diabetes, that diminish the quality of life. As people age, their metabolism often slows. A lot of the reasons can be traced to a lack of muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have the higher your metabolism will be. Weight training burns loads of calories and can boost your energy level so you’re more active.
When seniors start and maintain a fitness program that includes strength, aerobics, balance and flexibility training, it helps them maintain an independent lifestyle. It’s never too late to start. Maintaining a program of regular exercise provides the strength for daily activities, enhancing the potential for improved quality of life and independent living. People who begin fitness programs in their 40s and 50s have a head start for a much better future.
For more information, contact us today at Prime Fitness Studio