“What? I am supposed to go to the gym and start lifting barbells at my age of 68!!?”
That’s the typical reaction and good illustration of why so many people think that strength training includes nothing but weights and gyms. There are many ways that people of all ages can (and should) use strengthening exercises. These are not only going to help the body to be able to life heavy weights, but will also ensure that the body is using calories in an optimal way, burning up any excess fat, and remaining as safe and strong as possible.
Strength training can be done with just the use of the body weight, with simple resistance in things like water or with exercise bands, and with the use of specific exercises meant to strengthen and to tone.
This means that someone who might be considered “frail” or “fragile” could easily begin doing strength training with something as simple as a one or two pound dumbbell. They could sit in a safe and comfortable chair and start “lifting”.
It also means that someone unwilling to head to a gym can also do strength training, and in fact, a lot of the work that they could do would generate serious toning. For example, if you take a look at the moves that a lot of “cross training” or “cross fit” enthusiasts do, you see that they use their own body weights for training.
From pull ups and planks to the famous burpees and lunges, the only weights that they are lifting are their bodies. They use the movements to engage specific muscle groups and to consistently challenge those muscles to sustain that movement and force. This builds some of the most impressive strength and endurance imaginable.
People of all ages and all fitness levels should be doing some sort of strength training at all times. This is to ensure that no “atrophy” occurs within the muscles as this is one of the simplest ways to experience injury. When the muscle is not properly supporting the bone because it is not being used enough, it can cause all kinds of trouble.
Whether it is lifting heavy or lighter weights, using the body weight, or doing a lot of different exercises, there are plenty of ways to get strength training at all ages. Here’s a great way to let me help you with your weight training program.