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Benefits of Resistance Training

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Benefits of Resistance Training

At Method3 Fitness, our caring coaches design workouts that help our partners get active, gain energy and get healthy again.  Although no two sessions are ever the same, one common thread can be found across all workouts- resistance training.  Today, Coach Sweat lists the top reasons why our coaches want you to “fight the resistance” and embrace this valuable training style. 

 

What are the Benefits of Resistance Training?

Resistance training, aka strength training, aka weight training, has been shown to have many beneficial effects, both physically and mentally.  Here are just a few:

 

  1. Increased Metabolism Research by Dr. Wayne Wescott, director of research for the YMCA, suggests that just one pound of muscle will burn as much as 35 calories per day at rest. That’s more calories being burned even while you're just sitting around!
  2. Increased Muscle Mass Increased muscle mass is one way our body responds to the stress of resistance training, enhancing appearance and increasing strength.
  3. Decreased Risk of Heart Disease  Heart disease is the leading cause of premature death in the United States. A study published in 2017 in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise (MSSE) analyzed data from more than 35,000 women for more than a decade. Women who performed any amount of resistance training reduced their risk of cardiovascular disease (including heart attack, stroke, coronary artery bypass graft surgery, an angioplasty or death from cardiovascular disease) by 17 percent.
  4. Lower Cholesterol  Adding a resistance training program to your exercise routine has been shown to improve cholesterol levels, specifically lowering LDL-C. Resistance training combined with cardio has been shown to be more effective at improving cholesterol than cardio alone.
  5. Lower Blood Pressure  Resistance training combined with a cardio program is an effective way to decrease your resting blood pressure, reducing your risk of coronary artery disease.
  6. Increased Bone Density  Just as your muscles adapt and increase in size and strength to handle increased weight challenges, your bones increase in density to handle the new loads placed on your skeletal system. This increase in bone density may reduce your risk of osteoporosis. The rate of bone loss increases dramatically in the 5 to 10 years after menopause. Then, for several years, the breakdown of bone occurs at a much greater pace than the building of new bone. In one study, postmenopausal women who participated in a strength training program for a year saw significant increases in their bone density in the spine and hips, areas affected most by osteoporosis in older women.
  7. Decreased Risk of Various Types of Cancer  A research study by The University of Sydney School of Public Health of over 80,000 participants determined that there is a “well-established association between participation in regular physical activity and reductions in all-cause, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer-related mortality.” The study took a detailed look at cardio and strength/resistance training and compared mortality rates caused by the various diseases mentioned. The results clearly showed that weight bearing (or resistance training) exercise lowered participant’s risk of developing cancer.
  8. Improved Performance  Whether you are a weekend warrior or a professional athlete, resistance training can have a huge impact on your performance. Note: The type of resistance training used should become more “sports-specific” as your training becomes more advanced.
  9. Improved Mental Health  Strength training has been shown to be very effective at improving mental health, especially depression.  In a study at Harvard University, 10 weeks of strength training reduced clinical depression symptoms more successfully than standard counseling.  Additionally, a study conducted at Duke University found that patients with major depression randomized to an exercise group had declines in depression equal to those on antidepressants, and exercisers were less likely to relapse 6 months later than the medicated group. Strength training is also found to improve self-esteem, especially in women. It was found that men feel a boost in their body image when they feel good during training. However, women feel better about their body image when they see actual progress in their strength. Note, we are not advocating for reducing nor stopping antidepressants and always advise clients struggling with mental health to consult a specialist.  to always consult with your physician.  However, our coaches have found that  resistance training will always ADD to your mental well being.  
  10. Increased Physical Functioning  Resistance training will make daily tasks easier - such as mowing the lawn, taking out the trash, or walking up a flight of stairs.
  11. Improved Resting Insulin Levels and Increased Sensitivity  Studies have found  that strength training can decrease your risk of Type II Diabetes, the third largest cause of death in the United States. Although there are strong genetic ties with this disease a sedentary lifestyle and obesity are primary contributing factors to its onset.

One final note that is very important. A common misconception about heavy weight training, especially among women, is that lifting heavy weight will lead to a bulky looking physique. It’s true that lifting heavy will promote hypertrophy in muscles leading to a size increase.

However, the idea that it leads to a “bulky” look is untrue. The true culprit that leads to bulky physiques is fat accumulation. Excessive body fat is what causes both men and women to look bulky. The most important aspect of someone’s physique is his or her body fat percentage. A good physique nearly always requires a fairly low body fat percentage to achieve. Lifting heavy can help accomplish this and weight training has a plethora of benefits that can help develop muscle, shed fat and ultimately lead to anyone’s desired physique.

Below is a final recap of some of the benefits of resistance training: 

  • Stronger muscles, tendons and ligaments leading to more stable joints and overall movement

  • Increase in muscle size (greater in men than women)

  • Decrease in body fat due to burning calories and a more favorable hormonal balance

  • Increase in bone density 

  • Increase in production of neurotransmitters leading to better mood and balanced state of mind

  • Improved physical coordination

If you're ready to add strength training to your fitness routine and are unsure where to begin, contact us today. Our caring coaches will create a fitness plan that is tailored to specifically to YOU, your body and your goals. Fill out the "Let's Connect" box above to receive your free consultation with our San Jose personal fitness trainers OR call us 408-371-1212 to connect.  We're looking forward to talking with you!

 

Method3 Fitness is conveniently located in San Jose.  Our team of personal fitness trainers serve clients in Los Gatos, Campbell, Willow Glen and other surrounding Bay Area cities.  

 

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The Method3 Fitness blog is updated weekly by our San Jose personal fitness trainers. All content is designed to improve the way you move, eat, and think so you can achieve your goals and live stronger for today. Check back here each week and LIKE our Fan Page, to stay up to date on the latest tips, strategies and methods to get active, gain energy and get healthy again!


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