You’re never too old for strength training, and now it appears that working out actually can address the changes of aging, at least in muscle cells.
Researchers at Canada’s McMaster University published a report on how exercise reverses the aging of human skeletal muscles. The researchers from the study recruited a group of 51 men and women, 26 of the participants were between the ages of 20 and 35 and 25 of the participants were over 65 years old. At the outset, the investigators gathered skeletal muscle biopsies from all their subjects and also tested their muscle strength.
Then, for 26 weeks, 14 of the older group did twice-weekly, hour-long strength-training sessions in the gym. The investigators then repeated the biopsies and strength testing. Afterward, when the study team compared the exercise group with the young adults, they noted that they were only 38 percent weaker, as opposed to 59 percent weaker when the study began.
More importantly, when comparing the initial muscle biopsies with those taken after the exercise program, the researchers found that the “transcription profiles” of the exercises, which had been consistent with aging, had become more like those of the young group. These “profiles” show how well the mitochondria (tiny energy units in cells) are working. Thus, exercise can reverse some signs of aging.
If you are interested in using strength training to delay aging below are a few strength-training exercises for you to consider.
- Strength training for beginners. This strength-training program consists of nine exercises and requires two sets of dumbbells (three to five pounds and eight to twelve pounds). It’s great for working your legs, abs, back, and shoulders.
- Strength training at the gym. Have you got a gym membership? Put it to good use with this strength-training program. It only takes 30 to 35 minutes to complete, and experts suggest completing this routine two or three times a week. These exercises use a variety of exercise machines and weight loads, from five to seventy pounds. These exercises strengthen your biceps, triceps, abs, and hamstrings.
- Strength training tips. Do you already have a strength-training program? You may still need some tips to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your exercises. Here are seven more tips including warm-up suggestions, proper techniques, and appropriate rest periods.