Benefits of Strength Training – 7 strength training benefits and reasons to pick up a barbell now

Getting stronger isn't all about looking better and boosting your ego. The benefits of strength training go way beyond improving your physique.


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Here is the detailed list of 7 awesome reasons to make strength training a part of your life.

1. More muscle mass.

Here, is one of the more obvious benefits of strength training. So, I will get it out of the way.

Your body is excellent at adapting to the demands you put on it. Its capability to adapt is the reason that training works in the first place. Getting stronger is not just lifting more weight on the bar.

Increasing amount or reps you do, the total number of sets and the speed that you perform a rep all indicate that you have got stronger. Your body will adapt to these demands by increasing the size and amount of muscle you have on your body over time.

2. Stronger bones and connective tissue

Your body will, not only adapt to the demands of strength training by increasing muscle size, it can also adapt by increasing the strength of your bones as well [1].

it's very important for keeping you strong and reducing fracture risks, especially as you age. As an extra benefit, strength training can help improve your balance and connective tissue strength as well.

3. Life becomes easier

Almost everything is easier when you are stronger. Carrying shopping bags, climbing stairs, moving furniture and even just getting up out of a chair. Everybody would like an easier life so why not train for one.

4. Keeps you leaner.

As mentioned in number 1, strength training increases the muscle mass on your body. Not only does the muscle itself improve your physique, it can improve it even further by making it easier to burn fat.

You may have heard that muscle will rev up your metabolism and burn more calories while you rest. This is true but it is often overhyped and may not make as much of a difference as some people say [3].

What probably has more of an effect on calorie burn, is that those with increased muscle mass have been shown to burn more calories after their workouts [4]. Making for more effective workouts all round.

5. Reduces risks of disease and illnesses.

Increased bone density, as covered in number 2, can help prevent and improve symptoms of osteoporosis.

Other Illnesses and diseases, such as Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and diabetes have all been shown to be improved by physical activity that includes a form of resistance training [5] [6].

There has also been some talk that it could cut risk of certain cancers by up to 40% [7]

6. Benefits your mental state and energy level

Anxiety, depression, brain function, memory, chronic fatigue and sleep quality. All have had evidence to show that they can be improved upon with regular resistance and strength training [8].

7. Sense of achievement

Getting to the gym regularly is hard work, it’s made even harder when you aren’t progressing. With strength training, you will be constantly progressing and the numbers will be right there in front of you to see.

This really one of the less though of benefits of strength training. But, a very important one.

Heading to the gym becomes exciting and much more motivating when you can physically see your progress from week to week.

It also feels damn good to hit a new deadlift or squat P.R!

I'm sure after reading this, you're now itching to get yourself in the gym and picking up some barbells. If you are new to the gym, check out my article on how to conquer your first day in the gym.

Sources

[1] The effects of progressive resistance training on bone density: a review. - http://europepmc.org/abstract/MED/9927006

[2] Wang, Z., Heshka, S., Zhang, K., Boozer, C.N., & Heymsfield, S.B. (2001). Resting energy expenditure: systematic organization and critique of prediction methods - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11346676

[3] Smith, J., & McNaughton, L. (1993). The effects of intensity of exercise on excess post-exercise oxygen consumption and energy expenditure in moderately trained men and women. - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8299613

[4] A systematic review and meta-analysis of strength training in individuals with multiple sclerosis or Parkinson disease. -
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25634170

[5] Exercise and Type 2 Diabetes. The American College of Sports Medicine and the American Diabetes Association: joint position statement - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2992225/

[6] Men with big muscles cut cancer risk by 40 per cent -
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/news/5371468/Men-with-big-muscles-cut-cancer-risk-by-40-per-cent.html

[7] Resistance Training Improves Mental Health, Amenda Ramirez and Len Kravitz, Ph.D. - https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/RTandMentalHealth.html

Laine Norton
 

I am a strength training enthusiast that loves discovering new ways to get stronger. As a certified trainer and powerlifting competitor, I'm always looking for different training methods and advice. I hope to pass some of what I learn on to my fellow lifters.