Tim Panetta of TP Total Performance located in Mt Kisco NY explains why.
“Computed tomography has revealed that after age 30 there is a decrease in the cross-sectional areas of individual muscles, along with a decrease in muscle density and an increase in intramuscular fat. These changes seem to be a predictable consequence of advancing age and seem to be most pronounced in women (Drinkwater, 567-568).”
Muscle function is reduced in older adults, which impairs their ability to do daily tasks. Once you hit age 30 your body starts to lose skeletal muscle size and strength.
In the fitness world this process is known as sarcopenia, which is a result of aging or inactivity.
Although this process slowly begins at age 30, you won’t really start to notice the effects until age 40, and at age 65 this process really starts to accelerate.
This is why you generally see older people looking frail and weak (walking slowly).
This can be explained by the gradual loss of muscle in the body that comes with aging, resulting in a weak body that requires more energy and effort to move, balance, and stabilize. Therefore, because your body requires more energy to be active, your body gets fatigued faster. To top it off, this usually leads to an even more sedentary lifestyle, which can cause even more health problems!
OK, NOW TO THE GOOD NEWS!
This process can be delayed, or better yet, reversed!
By Lifting Weights!
I am not just saying this because I like to weight train, lifting weights can slow down this muscle destroying process and even reverse some of its effects.
Studies show that both aerobic and resistance exercise are beneficial for older adults, but only resistance training can increase muscular strength and muscle mass.
Okay so the bottom line is if we weight train we can not only preserve muscle mass and strength, but actually improve it. While at the same time increasing our resting metabolism and decreasing our body fat!
That last sentence is worth reading over again!!!!
And no matter how young you are, it is not too early to start! By starting early, you can significantly delay the effects of sarcopenia.
As you begin lifting weights, you will notice a transformation in your body.
This is when you start to feel more confident, you feel stronger, your skin feels tighter, you have more energy, you have more balance and everyday tasks seem much easier.
Don’t let another day go by where you lose muscle! Start slow and add some weights into your daily routine, your health and quality of life will greatly improve!
Drinkwater, B. Weight-bearing exercise and bone mass. Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am 6:567-578. 1995.