‘’I don’t want to get bulky’’, ‘’It burns fewer calories than cardio’’, ‘’It’s only for men’’ - do these all sound familiar?
Of course I am talking about strength training - and the well believed myths behind it.
Firstly, Strength training has an incredible number of benefits that do not include ‘becoming bulky’. To be honest, at one point I focused my entire training on cardio rather than building muscle for this exact reason.
However, did you know that strength exercise can benefit your heart, improve balance, strengthen bones and muscle, and help you lose or maintain weight?
So, let’s get back to basics.
Strength training — also known as weight or resistance training — is physical activity designed to improve muscular strength and fitness by exercising a specific muscle or muscle group against external resistance, including free-weights, weight machines, or your own body weight.
Strength training is great for all ages as not only does it help to build muscle, but it also helps to retain lean muscle. The most important thing to remember is strength training is not only aimed at bodybuilders and weightlifters.
Incredible benefit number 1: Strength Training Makes You Stronger and Fitter - According to the Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine, there are two types of resistance training:
Isometric resistance which involves contracting your muscles against a non-moving object, such as against the floor in a push up.
Isotonic strength training which involves contracting your muscles through a range of motion, as in weightlifting.
Incredible benefit number 2: Strength Training Helps Your Body Burn Calories Efficiently - When you exercise, this helps to helps boost your metabolism which is the rate your resting body burns calories throughout the day.
But when you do strength, weight, or resistance training, your body demands more energy based on how much energy you’re exerting, which therefore means more calories are burned during the workout, and more calories burned after the workout, while your body is recovering to a resting state.
So effectively you burn fat all day? That sounds pretty wonderful!
If you are feeling like you need a push in the right direction then LES MILLS GRIT® Strength is a 30-minute high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout, designed to improve strength, cardiovascular fitness and build lean muscle and would be the perfect class to start. This workout uses barbell, weight plate and bodyweight exercises to blast all major muscle groups.
LES MILLS GRIT® Strength takes cutting-edge HIIT and combines it with powerful music and inspirational coaches who will guide you, motivating you to go harder to get fit, fast. With Les Mills on demand you can even do this workout from the comfort of your home.
You can also check out their BODYPUMP Work out in progress here.
Overall, through this article, I think it's safe to say that Strength training is the way forward but if I haven't quite persuaded you yet then these 6 quick points should get you over the line:
- Building better functioning muscles
- Improves balance and coordination
- Greater strength and flexibility
- Weight management
- More confidence as you get stronger and leaner
- Building strong, lean muscle
When it comes to free weights and at home training Blue Fitness is the exclusive supplier of all Les Mills SMART TECH equipment through Australia to kick start your Strength journey.
Have questions about what equipment is right for you? Connect with us now and we can walk you through the best options for your home based workout.