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  • Writer's pictureAli

How Does Strength Training Help Your Health

Updated: Jan 11

Strength training is an effective way to make you stronger and fitter, and it should not be underestimated. As we age, our muscles gradually begin to decline, making muscle strength crucial in making it easier to perform daily activities.

Strength training involves contracting your muscles against an opposing force, which helps to strengthen and tone them.

Resistance training comes in two forms: isometric and isotonic. 

  • Isometric resistance involves contracting your muscles against a non-moving object, such as against the floor in a push-up. 

  • Isotonic strength training involves contracting your muscles through a range of motion, as in weight lifting. 


Strength training is essential for safeguarding muscle mass and bone health. As we age, we tend to lose up to 3-5% of our lean muscle mass every decade, starting from the age of 30. Postmenopausal women with poor bone mass can benefit from just 30 minutes of high-intensity resistance and impact training twice a week, without experiencing any negative side effects. Therefore, muscle-strengthening exercises are recommended for everyone to preserve or enhance muscle mass, strength, and power, which are crucial for maintaining bone, joint, and muscle health as we age. 


Strength training is an effective way to burn calories in your body. Regardless of the type of exercise, your metabolism increases, which boosts the rate at which your resting body burns calories throughout the day. After strength training, your body continues to burn calories as it returns to its resting state, just like with aerobic exercise. When you engage in strength, weight, or resistance training, your body uses more energy in proportion to the amount of effort you put forth. This means that the harder you work, the more energy is required and the more calories you burn, both during and after the activity as your body returns to rest. Therefore, depending on how much effort you put into your workout, you can intensify this effect and burn more calories overall. 


Strength training can help you maintain long-lasting weight loss benefits. In fact, it is more effective in accelerating weight reduction when combined with aerobic exercise. This is because it causes an increase in post-exercise oxygen consumption, which means your metabolism remains active for a longer period after resistance or strengthening exercises. Since lean tissue is generally more active, you'll burn more calories if you have more muscle mass. This means you're likely to burn calories even when you're not exercising, such as when you're sleeping.

A study published in the Journal of Obesity in November 2017 found that dieters who engaged in strength training exercises four times per week for 18 months lost more fat compared to those who performed only aerobic exercise or did neither. They lost about 18 pounds, compared to 10 pounds for non-exercisers and 16 pounds for those who only did aerobic exercise. 


Strength training can be incredibly beneficial for improving your body mechanics. It has been proven to enhance balance, coordination, and posture. According to research, performing at least one resistance training session per week, whether alone or as part of a comprehensive program that includes various workouts, can result in up to a 37% increase in muscle strength, a 7.5% increase in muscle mass, and a 58% increase in functional capacity. This ultimately reduces the risk of falls in frail, elderly adults. Your balance is determined by the strength of the muscles that keep you on your feet. Therefore, the stronger these muscles are, the better your balance will be. 


Strength training is beneficial for managing chronic health conditions. Studies have shown that strength training can help alleviate symptoms in individuals with various chronic illnesses, including neuromuscular disorders, HIV, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and certain types of cancer. Additionally, incorporating strength training into a healthy lifestyle can improve glucose control for the more than 30 million Americans with type 2 diabetes. 

Strength training can help boost your mood and energy levels. Engaging in any physical activity stimulates the production of endorphins, which can elevate your mood. However, the neurochemical and neuromuscular reactions triggered by strength training provide further evidence that they positively impact the brain. In addition, research suggests that strength training may improve your ability to fall asleep. 


Written by Ali.

Live in Harmony Co-Creator


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