There’s more to pumping iron than lifting weights

  • Betty Doyling pumping iron (Photograph supplied)

    Betty Doyling pumping iron (Photograph supplied)

Iím sure many have enjoyed all of the walking or running that youíve been doing for the past few months.

However, donít forget the weights. This year is not over yet and thereís still time to define your muscularity, improve your appearance and fight muscle loss as we age.

If you are not sure where to start or if you can even can fit it in, read on to understand how to get started.

What is weight training?


Weight training is a type of strength training for developing the strength and size of skeletal muscles that causes them to get stronger, like the way aerobic activity strengthens your heart.

You can use free weights, such as barbells, kettlebells, dumbbells, or by using weighted machines. Resistance bands and your own body weight is another great option for strengthening your body.

It doesnít take long

You donít have to workout for an hour a day to see results. For most of us, short weight-training sessions at least twice a week is sufficient.

You can see significant improvement in your strength with two to three 30-minute training sessions per week.

Maintain good form

Make sure that you learn the proper form while weight training. Bad form can lead to injuries such as fractures, strains and sprains if not done correctly.

If youíre new to weight training, work with a trainer to learn the correct form.

Even those that are more experienced need to brush up on their form sometimes.

Always warm up

Try walking, running or another aerobic activity for five or ten minutes before beginning your weight routine.

Start with one to two sets

Begin with a weight that fatigues your muscle after about ten to 12 repetitions.

You should be barely able to finish that very last repetition, but you can!

Start slowly

If youíre just beginning, you may find that you can lift only a few pounds and thatís OK.

Once your muscles get used to weight training exercises, you will be surprised at how quickly you progress if you are consistent.

Once you can easily do ten to 12 repetitions or more with a particular weight, gradually increase the weight.

Resting is important

Donít forget to rest at least a day in between working a specific muscle group so your muscles have a little recovering time.

For example, you could work chest and shoulders on Mondays, legs on Tuesdays and so on.

Keep improving

Lean muscle mass will decrease naturally as we age. If nothing is done to replace the muscle loss, it will be replaced with fat.

But weight training can definitely help to reverse the trend of muscle loss.

As your muscle mass increases, youíll be able to lift weights a lot easier and perform daily task more efficiently.

Weight training will also help to maintain your bone density, help with weight control and improve your metabolism.

So donít wait. Go for it!

Grab a weight and B-Active For Life!

ē Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with more than a decade of experience. Look for B. ActiveForLife on Facebook

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Published Aug 19, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Aug 19, 2020 at 7:49 am)

There’s more to pumping iron than lifting weights

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