Simple Strength Training


The older you get, the more muscle you lose. It’s a fact. But with strength (resistance) training you can improve your preparedness for life by lessening the effects of muscle loss from aging.

The key to success is to exercise frequently.
The best way to do that is to keep it simple.

Here’s how…



Aim for 10-15 repetitions of each exercise within the following areas:

Push something away from your body, like pushups or the chest press – which focus on your triceps, chest and shoulders.

Pull something by doing chin-ups or biceps curls or a rowing machine – which target the upper back, the back of the shoulders, and the biceps.

Target the legs by exercises such as knee extensions, squats, climbing stairs or jumping up and down.

Build the core with exercises such as sit-ups, crunches, or twisting motions – which focus on core muscles of the abdomen and back.



Choose a middle ground of 10-15 repetitions per exercise while limiting your strength-training sessions to 20 minutes.

Although fewer repetitions (e.g. 10 or less) with heavier weights will more greatly increase muscle mass and bone density than more reps with lighter weight, your risk of injury will be higher. Therefore a middle ground of 10-15 is a good compromise.

Also, apparently when strength-training beyond 20 minutes, the relative effectiveness starts to drop off, especially for those who are older.



To determine how much to lift – if you can breathe comfortably while lifting it for 15 repetitions, it’s probably okay. If you can do more than 15 repetitions easily, then increase the weight. If you are only breathing comfortably for the first 10, then stop there and lessen the weight. If you have to hold your breath to lift it, it’s too heavy.



Generally it’s best to strength train no more than every other day, but if you’re still sore, give yourself more time to recuperate. This is because the exercise is tearing muscle which then heals and rebuilds even more. Problems can arise if you don’t give it time to heal before continuing. Try to strength train 2-3 days a week.

Talk to your doctor before you start any strength training program.