Thursday, June 12, 2008

Don't Forget the Weights

So often women workout and they forget about strength training. While aerobic exercise is important, as it helps strengthen your heart, weight training is just important...especially for women. As we age we lose bone mass. Too much loss of bone mass can lead to osteoporosis. From Black Women's Health:

Women typically lose 25% of their bone mass by age 70, putting us at risk for fractures. Strength training has been shown to actually thicken the bones in the fracture-vulnerable spine and hips. It also increases overall physical strength and balance, greatly reducing the chance of devastating falls.

So weight training isn't just about looking good but about being healthy and strong in your older years. A solid strength training routine 2 - 3 times a week is enough to keep you healthy and strong (and fit) for years to come. Black Women's Health goes on to offer some tips on how to strengthen your bones:

  • Exercise. Start a moderate strength training program on a regular basis.

  • Get your Calcium and Vitamin D. You need both to build and maintain bones.

  • Eat a Balanced, Varied Diet.

  • Don't Get Too Thin. Being significantly underweight can accelerate loss of bone density, even in younger women.

  • Don't Smoke.

  • Limit Your Alcohol Intake.

  • Know Your Relative Risk. If you have a relative with osteoporosis or its symptoms (hunched back, loss of height, easily broken bones), ask your doctor to evaluate your risk and give you information on other treatment options, if necessary.

  • Be Aware of medical Conditions and medications that can affect your bone density such as thyroid disease or the use of corticosteroids (often used for asthma and other medical conditions).

  • At Menopause, bone density may decline very rapidly.

So remember to keep fit, healthy and strong add those weights to your regular workout. Your body will love you for it and you'll love the results.

Today is a new day, so what are you waiting for.