Lifting weights, or resistance training, is very important for your health and longevity. Without regular - even daily - sessions devoted to weights, your workout routine is missing something of vital importance.
I know lots of devotees of running, bicycling, swimming or other physically demanding activities, who basically ignore this very valuable part of physical exercise. Young folks can most likely get away with ignoring it - until some time during their 50s.
Sometime during my fifties or maybe early sixties, I noticed that I had become weaker. It really showed up during times when I attempted some physical work.
I had worked on my own car from time to time starting from my first car, when I was a teenager. I had always taken strength for granted. Suddenly, though - during an effort to change a tire, or a water pump or something, I found that my strength was severely diminished.
Even if you never have need for physical strength (which would be very unusual), lifting weights is just as important as it would be if you needed strength for your everyday work.
It's probably normal just to assume that lifting weights is something only pursued by body builders.
If you're like me, body building is not high on your list. For me, it was never on my list.
Even now, after including weight lifting as part of my workout routine for nearly 10 years, body building is really not a consideration. Good thing, since my physical stature is that of a scrawny teenager.
From what I've been told and from what I've read, lifting weights is vital for bone health. For those of us who have entered our senior years, it's also vital for maintaining strength, healthy joints, muscles, and ligaments.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not part of the lift weights or die crowd.
I'm sure that anyone can remain quite healthy as long as you eat correctly and walk regularly.
But having now included weight lifting as part of my regular workout routine for about ten years, its benefits are very apparent to me.
I've experience a couple of incidents resulting in injuries to muscles or bones during the last couple of years.
I took a fall - a face plant onto a sidewalk two years ago, which resulted in a torn rotator cuff.
Having a history of always avoiding medical doctors and medical
treatments, I went to our very talented chiropractor and applied
kinesiologist, who advised me to ice the shoulder extensively several
times each day.
Within a few days, I was using simple exercises he had prescribed to facilitate the healing.
Gradually I returned to using weights along with our weight machine. Within 6 months, I was nearly fully rehabilitated with normal range of motion. The strength returned within another 3-6 months.
That muscle tissue is typically very slow to heal. I've known several men and women whose rotator cuff injuries have taken 2 or more years to heal - and some never did heal completely.
Injuries to ankles and legs which could have resulted in fractures have been no problem for these old bones to handle.
Bones usually become brittle with age - but you can avoid that situation with regular weigth lifting as part of your workout routine.
Of course, great nutrition is vital as well.
The body we each possess is an amazing mechanism. It actually will not wear out if you involve yourself in exercises including weight lifting.
Return to Physical Exercises from Lifting Weights.