As you get older, there is an inevitable decline in overall muscle mass. This is why it is so important that you continue to build and maintain your muscle mass throughout your life, so that you are able to maintain optimal health and well-being both now and in the future. While it is important to start caring for your body early on, the muscle deterioration process really begins to accelerate after age 50, meaning people in their thirties and forties still have time to help themselves during their golden years.
Building muscle also has a lot of benefits that you can see now. For example, muscle mass increases your metabolic rate. The more muscle you have, the more calories you will be able to burn while your body is at rest. One pound of muscle uses about six calories per day to sustain itself, while fat on the other hand, burns up only two calories per day per one pound of fat. That’s a big difference!
Muscles also help to improve insulin sensitivity and protect against insulin resistance. This is because they store glucose as glycogen. This glycogen is then used as fuel and depleted whenever you move. The opposite of this is sarcopenia, or inadequate muscle mass and can be related to diabetes. So if you are losing muscle, you are more likely to become insulin resistant and possibly diabetic in the future.
When we have adequate muscle strength, it greatly reduces the risk of injury during routine daily activities. Things like throwing your back out, falling easily, and waking up with backaches, can all be attributed to inadequate muscle strength. As you get older a lack of muscle mass can have much more serious consequences, leading to greater injury during falls and the possibility of being unable to fully recover.
A great benefit of muscle training is that it quickly improves posture and strengthens your core. You’ll feel taller, move around easier and maintain the strength you need to go about your daily activities. This doesn’t just lead to a greater self esteem, it also leads to better overall health.
When most people think of muscle building, they think of big, bulky men, but the truth is that you don’t need to bodybuilder’s muscles to have good muscle mass or overall strength. The only person you are competing with here is yourself and what it takes for your body to be healthy. Spending a few hours on strength training every day will be more than enough for you to see a real difference.
Weight training is going to change your body in a positive way. Your physique will be longer and leaner. Your clothes will feel better, and more than anything you will know that you are doing something that won’t just help you now, but in the future as well.