Last month we looked at how making just a few lifestyle changes can make a significant difference to our quality of life. This month, we’re going to dial into the first of those lifestyle factors which is exercise and in particular strength or resistance training.
For years, strength training has previously been the hobby of bodybuilders or athletes but year by year evidence mounts to highlight its crucial role in maintaining our health and quality of life.
“If physical activity were a drug, we would refer to it as a miracle cure, due to a great many illnesses it can prevent and help treat.”
Before we go into any detail, let me give you an overview of what physical activity we should be doing. This is from the UK’s chief medical officer…
Adult (19-64) guidelines:
Why should we strength train?
Strengthening activities are important throughout life for different reasons: to develop strength and build healthy bones during childhood and young adulthood; to maintain strength in adulthood; and to delay the natural decline in muscle mass and bone density which occurs from around 50 years of age, maintaining function in later life
What should we do?
The advice is that we should perform exercise that causes the strengthening of the muscles twice per week.
Although there is no concrete guidance on what exercise this should be, our priority is to rebuild movement capacity by ensuring what they learn in the gym has carryover to activities of daily life (ADL).
These are called compound (multi-joint) movements. As well as having the great carryover and the ability to improve your quality of life, they also provide the best return for the time spent exercising due to the many joints and muscles used.
Here are our top four exercises to help you keep moving and maintain strength!
1. The Squat
Being able to sit down and stand back up is a fundamental human movement and one that can quite literally be correlated with longevity. It’s often called the king of exercises as it involves so many muscle groups.
2. The Deadlift
Being able to bend using our hips ensures we can utilise the strength in our lower body muscles when lifting objects.
3. The Press
Maintaining a full range of movement in our upper body even if we’re to maintain simple movements like changing lightbulbs.
4. The Row
Pulling movements, like the single-arm row shown below are great exercises to strengthen our back musculature and help us maintain a great, upright posture.
Good habits rely on flexibility and convenience. Having all of our sessions available via our On Demand library gives you the ability to access great training anytime, anyplace.
Whether you live too far away to visit frequently or prefer the comfort of training at home, our LIVE training program will deliver great results. No matter what you’re looking to achieve, we’ve proven results using this method of training.
Located north and south of the Wye, our two well appointed Hereford gyms, give members from the county and further afield easy access to our services. Both also providing shower and changing facilities and the chance to grab a post workout tea or coffee!