Weight loss gets harder as you get older, but it isn’t impossible. Maintaining a healthy weight and losing weight is doable if you maintain a healthy metabolism with a good diet and regular physical activity, including weight training.
Weight Training for Weight Loss
Weight training?! It doesn’t seem like gaining muscle could help you lose weight, does it? But it can. Muscle helps your body burn more calories even when you are not exercising. A healthy metabolism is the key to weight loss and weight maintenance. In a press release, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Spokesperson Manuel Villacorta, MS, RD, CSSD explains how the process works as we age.
“Our muscle mass decreases as we age, which slows metabolic rates by 2 to 8 percent per decade. But you can counteract this process by picking up the weights. “Having good muscle mass, especially towards your 40s and 50s, is important. If you start with a good baseline, your metabolism isn’t going to decrease as much. But if you haven’t picked up a weight in your life, then by age 50, your metabolism may slow down tremendously because you don’t have a good baseline.”
How to Start Lifting Weights
Your first step before starting any exercise program should be to talk to your doctor. Your primary care provider may have specific guidelines for you to follow in order to stay safe. Once you’ve been cleared for exercise, it’s time to get started! But don’t worry, you don’t have to go to the local weight room if you don’t want to.
Simple body weight exercises can help you build strength and muscle throughout your body. You can do these exercises in the comfort of your own home. Watch this video from the American College of Sports Medicine to see demonstrations of beginning level upper body and lower body exercises. You might also want to ask your doctor for a referral to see an exercise specialist at the Institute for Athletic Medicine. A strong lean body will help you move through your day more comfortably, sleep better at night and maintain a healthy weight.
See more helpful exercise videos and get more healthy eating tips at North Memorial Healthy Weight Loss online