About Cardio & Resistance Training

CARDIOVASCULAR TRAINING

Cardiovascular training is one of the most important components to leading a healthy lifestyle.

Cardiovascular training has numerous health benefits, including:

  • Reduced blood pressure
  • Improved blood circulation and coagulation
  • Enhanced coronary vascular system
  • Reduced heart disease risk by 50%
  • Reduced LDL cholesterol level
  • Increased HDL cholesterol level

RESISTANCE TRAINING

Resistance training is an important element to overall fitness.
It helps develop strong muscles that are used throughout home and work activities on a daily basis. These strong muscles help develop strong bones that can help prevent osteoporosis and reduce the likelihood of falling and breaking a bone.

Muscular strength
Relates to how much weight a particular muscle can lift in one repetition. It’s essentially 100% effort one time.

Muscular endurance
Relates to how many repetitions a particular muscle can do or how long a static contraction is held by a muscle. It’s about 65% effort several times until fatigue. Though women do not naturally produce enough testosterone to develop very large muscles, many women tend to prefer muscular endurance training in which more repetitions are performed at a lower weight. See the chart on page 14 to determine the number of sets and repetitions you should perform.

Reasons to participate in resistance training:

  1. Resistance training can be performed anywhere.
    Resistance training benefits can be attained through a variety of different methods. You can utilize whatever equipment you already have. Use a soup can as a dumbbell. Use a kitchen chair as an exercise step. Use your couch as an exercise bench. Be creative. Find an alternative to buying expensive exercise equipment.
  2. Avoid muscle loss and increase muscle mass.
    Adults who do not do resistance training lose between 5 and 7 pounds of muscle every decade. Although cardiovascular training improves our cardiovascular fitness, it does not prevent loss of muscle tissue. Only muscular strength and/or endurance training maintains our muscle mass and strength throughout our mid-life years. Further, weight loss can involve loss of some muscle mass; therefore, women should participate in regular resistance training. Evidence suggests that regular resistance training increases lean muscle mass even in adults who currently have disease risk factors, such as hypertension or overweight.
  3. Avoid metabolic rate reduction and increase metabolic rate.
    Muscle loss is accompanied by a reduction in resting metabolism. The average adult experiences a 2 to 5% reduction in metabolic rate every decade. Research shows that adding 3 lbs of muscle increases resting metabolic rate by 7% and daily calorie requirements by 15%. At rest one pound of muscle requires 35 calories per day for tissue maintenance. During exercise muscle energy utilization increases dramatically.
  4. Reduce body fat
    Individuals who participate in resistance training, not only develop more lean muscle mass, but may also lose body fat. Research suggests that this training effect can occur in those with or without metabolic disease. Reduced body fat will lead to a healthier body composition.
  5. Reduce low back pain
    Eighty percent of Americans experience low back pain. Research has shown that strong low back muscles are less likely to be injured than weak low back muscles.
  6. Increase bone mineral density
    The effects of resistance training exercise are similar for muscle tissue and bone tissue. The same training stimulus that increases muscle also increases bone collagen proteins and mineral content. Bone mineral density can be significantly increased after a resistance training program, which can combat the bone loss that occurs post menopause.
  7. Reduce resting blood pressure
    Resistance training alone has been shown to reduce resting blood pressure significantly. Studies reveal that combining resistance and cardiovascular exercise is an even more effective means of improving blood pressure readings. Participating in resistance training may help regulate blood pressure even if blood pressure is high.
  8. Reduce arthritic pain
    Sensible resistance training eases the pain of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. This is good news, because most men and women who suffer from arthritis pain need resistance training to develop stronger muscles, bones, and connective tissue.

Next step

Develop a training plan and Get Active.

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