However, there is no need to slow down or take it easy as you age. You don't need to lose strength and give up what you care about. Age and experience are not limited by the number of miles on the clock.
And that power can profoundly affect how long you live healthy and happy. In this article, we'll show that increasing your strength is linked to a better aging and mortality profile, better bone and heart health, and a higher quality of life overall.
Good news, best of all? One can always gain muscle and reap the rewards of exercise, regardless of age. However, a new approach to training is required if you hope to maintain fitness (or even improve your current fitness level) as you age.
Aging and Body Changes: What to Expect
The fact of life is that aging can bring about various changes. If not addressed, they can reduce happiness and shorten your life expectancy.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death among both sexes in the United States. The National Institute on Aging reports that the population over 65 is disproportionately affected.
How come this always seems to occur? Congealed fat in the artery walls is a common consequence of aging. These deposits (known as plaque) can harden and narrow the arteries over time. Arteriosclerosis is the narrowing of arteries, which increases the risk of a heart attack by limiting the amount of blood and oxygen that can reach the heart.
As you get older, changes occur in your skeleton as well. Bone is a dynamic, living tissue. Bone tissue is constantly being broken down and replaced by the body, although these processes may be slower than in other body parts.
Maintaining Mobility: The Best Way to Stay Injury Free
The risk of injury or dangerous falls increases if you can't move your joints freely through their range of motion (and control it).
It takes work to keep up with your regular exercise routine when you're nursing an injury. Muscle loss begins when you stop exercising. What's the big deal, anyway? A shorter life expectancy is strongly linked to muscle atrophy.
Weight loss is aided by avoiding injuries in a roundabout way. Keeping your weight in a healthy range requires a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise, and NEAT (non-exercise activity thermogenesis) is the term for the latter. Inactivity throughout the day can lead to weight gain that is as gradual as the passing of the years.
Strength Training: What Should Change and What Should Stay the Same with Age
There should be a change in your exercise routine as you get older. Training at your absolute maximum on the bench press or squat every day was fun while it lasted, but those days are probably over. Now is the time to start training for maximum longevity.
When I say "longevity," what do I mean? You inevitably lose some abilities as you age, and I'm not just talking about your memory.
Inactive people start losing muscle mass at a rate of 1-2% per year starting in their 30s. With the average lifespan now well into the 80s, this can cause a significant decline in muscle mass in the 60s and beyond.
We also call this a loss of power, or the inability to react quickly, which will accumulate over the years. Activities like jumping and medicine ball throwing come to mind.