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How Strength Training Can Completely Transform Your Body

How Strength Training Can Completely Transform Your Body
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Exercise is one of the most powerful physical and mental health interventions anyone can undertake. Everyone should participate in some form of exercise every day. Unfortunately, most do not exercise regularly at all and even among those that do, participating in a strength training program is more of a rarity than the norm, especially with women and seniors.

But things are changing and strength training is having a real renaissance moment right now.

Until recently, strength training wasn’t always considered to be as important as cardio and many didn’t pay it the reverence it deserves, instead focusing on cardiovascular exercise and events like 5K’s, marathons and triathlons. However, now it’s hard to look through my Facebook, Twitter or Instagram feed without seeing updates about squat, deadlift, powerclean and bench press PR’s. Weight training has even made it to prime time TV with the CrossFit Games and National Pro Grid League. This is great because now many people are realizing the power of strength training and how it can completely transform your body.

Increase Strength

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    One of the most obvious effects of a strength training program is the increase in physical strength. And being physically strong has a number of awesome side effects.

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    Yeah, you’ll notice the obvious things — like you’re not intimidated by the weight room anymore. You’re totally comfortable with a barbell in your hands and you’ve graduated from the vinyl coated dumbbells stored in the group exercise room to the ones on the weight rack.

    But you’ll also realize that your life is easier. Never having to think twice about carrying your kids, groceries, or the inevitable snow shoveling this winter. Things that used to be a real chore aren’t such a hassle and don’t leave you out of breath, sore and hurting for days. All of your ADL’s (activities of daily living) become much easier and less of a strain when you’ve changed your body through strength training.

    “Lifting weights is excellent for improving bone density, joint mobility, and body composition.” Not to mention that daily tasks such as lugging groceries, moving furniture, and climbing stairs become easier.” —Alexander Koch, Ph.D

    Increase Muscle Mass

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      Let’s face it, most of us start working out to look better naked and strength training is one of the best ways to achieve that goal.

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      Unfortunately, many “fit” looking people focus only on “cardio”, yoga and other forms of exercise that, while possessing their own benefits, don’t include building muscle. This results in someone who is very thin yet has a high body fat percentage and suffers from the dreaded “skinny fat” phenomenon. They appear to be fit and healthy with clothes on but actually have a comparatively high body fat percentage due to their low muscle mass. Skinny fat is probably most prevalent with women who are (incorrectly) afraid that weights will “bulk them up”, so they focus solely on cardiovascular exercise. Fact is, most women don’t have the hormone profile to add appreciable muscle mass. And even if they do, it usually takes years of dedicated, intensive, weight training and diet to build extreme muscle mass. If you’re still scared you’ll bulk up, keep in mind that research has consistently shown most women feel better about their body after they start strength training.

      Adding some muscle mass, changing the size of a muscle, is really the only way to change the shape or “build” of your body. If you finally want the arms, shoulders, legs or butt you’ve been after, you need to lift some weights. This goes for the guys, too. Strength training through progressive overload is the only way to stress the muscles, force them to grow, and add the muscle size and shape you’re after.

      Decrease Body Fat

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        Like cardio, strength training burns fat, too! Although not able to match the fat-burning rates of cardio, strength training results in an “afterburn” effect where calories are burned at an elevated rate after exercise has stopped. The afterburn can last up to 72 hours after exercise. While most people focus on cardio for losing the last 5 lbs of fat, most trainers will agree that the most effective formula for weight loss is usually a combination of nutrition and strength training.

        When combined with the increase in metabolism that results from adding more muscle to your frame over time, it’s obvious that strength training can be a powerful tool in the battle against body fat.

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        Improve Posture

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          Many of us look and feel depressed, sickly, even fat, simply because we have poor posture. Our, “Desk Jockey” lifestyle has lead us to exist in this hunched over, hang off the skeleton, stance. And it is wreaking havoc on our health. Proper strength training can help strengthen weak postural muscles, even out imbalances and help to reverse this posture. Not only will you appear taller, stronger and more attractive, you’ll feel that way too.

          “We found that the effect of the direction of thoughts (positive/negative) on self-related attitudes was significantly greater when participants wrote their thoughts in the confident than in the doubtful posture.” —Pablo Briñol, Richard E. Petty and Benjamin Wagner

          Build a Better Skeleton

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            Building and maintaining bone density is important for everyone as we age. Strong bones mean a lesser risk of the debilitating injuries that can result from bone breaks and fractures that can occur to anyone but become especially dangerous and prevalent as we age. Women are especially susceptible to bone loss as a result of age related hormonal and lifestyle changes. Strength training produces strong bones that cardiovascular exercise just can’t match.

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            “Both aerobic and resistance training exercise can provide weight-bearing stimulus to bone, yet research indicates that resistance training may have a more profound site specific effect than aerobic exercise. Over the past 10 years, nearly two dozen cross-sectional and longitudinal studies have shown a direct and positive relationship between the effects of resistance training and bone density.” —Layne, Nelson

            Bones are thought to increase density primarily in response to compressive forces. This is what makes strength training exercises like squats, shoulder presses, pushups, lunges and deadliftts so effective at creating bone mass. They place a compressive stress on the larger bones and lead to an increase in bone density and a stronger, more resilient skeleton.

            Improve Brain Function

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              We’ve known for a while now that cardiovascular exercise can physically change the brain by actually growing brain cells. Now we know that strength training can have brain benefits too. According to Dr. Teresa Liu-Ambrose, weight training can beneficially change the structure of the brain, but “a minimum threshold of exercise needs to be achieved.”

              While most of this research is new, it’s promising and is the first to show that strength training, as little as twice a week, may also result in a physical change to the brain.

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              Strength training and adding muscle mass can literally transform your body. You can start out weak, slumped, soft and frail only to transform into someone strong, resilient and solid. While we’re all bound by our genetics and frame, strength training and adding muscle mass is the only way guys are going to build biceps that bust t-shirt sleeves and girls are going to build glutes they buy jeans show off instead of hide. In fact, many celebrities and models focus primarily on strength training when they need to get in shape fast and look their best.

              But, keep in mind, strength training is about so much more than just lifting weights, building your muscles and looking great. It’s about vitality, energy, confidence and independence. Once you’ve experienced the benefits of strength training you’ll understand how strength training can completely transform your body, inside and out.

              photo credit: Pinterest

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              Last Updated on July 12, 2021

              100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier

              100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier
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              Want to learn some quick and easy life hacks that are easy to do, low cost and saves you time?

              By tweaking little things in your daily life, it can make your life much more convenient!

              Here’re 100 of the most practical life hacks so you can just pick up any of them right away!

              83 tie a small piece of bright colored fabric

                84 write random letter

                  85 use a rubberband

                    86 dorm smell bad

                      87 lean your phone on your sunglassess

                        89 how to waterproof your shoes

                          90 take a picture of the name card

                            91 iron inside out

                              92 old newspaper

                                93 tumble try shoes

                                  keep a card like this

                                    SONY DSC

                                      94 soap bar

                                        95 make a hole

                                          96 drop the battery

                                            97 use a coozie

                                              98 when taking a picture

                                                use a clean dust pan

                                                  try a pants hanger

                                                    use your cellphone light

                                                      use a spring from an old pen

                                                        quick and easy iphone speaker

                                                          user binder clips

                                                            wrap a wet paper towel around your beverage

                                                              put pancake mix in a ketchup bottle

                                                                clean out an old lotion bottle for your beach

                                                                  use a muffin tin to serve condiments at a bbq

                                                                    doritos are great for kindling

                                                                      use nail polish to identify different keys

                                                                        use a hanging shoe rack to store cleaning supplies

                                                                          freeze grapes to chill white wine without

                                                                            use paper clips to organize your cables

                                                                              almost finished your jar of nutella

                                                                                sick of having a box full of tangled

                                                                                  unroll the rim to increase the capacity

                                                                                    cut open toilet paper rolls and use as a cuff

                                                                                      remove the stem from strawberries

                                                                                        turn an old bottle into a simple little cord holder

                                                                                          for iced coffee and iced cappuccino, use frozen coffee cubes

                                                                                            how to fold a fitted bed sheet

                                                                                              tired of snoozing past your alarm

                                                                                                place a rubber band around an open paint can to wipe your brush on

                                                                                                  ut a wooden spoon across a boiling pot

                                                                                                    use bread clips to save flip-flops

                                                                                                      take pictures of friends holding items

                                                                                                        how i always know which headphone is the left one

                                                                                                          put a stocking over the end of a vacuum

                                                                                                            How to make sure you drink enough water

                                                                                                              user a can opener to open blister

                                                                                                                good sandwich guide

                                                                                                                  turn your muffin pans upside down

                                                                                                                    50 pounds of groceries and living on the 5th floor

                                                                                                                      the right way to make a blt

                                                                                                                        add one teaspoon of baking soda

                                                                                                                          38

                                                                                                                            hair straighteners equals to collar irons

                                                                                                                              stack your clothes vertically to see them all

                                                                                                                                the right way to make cookies in the summer

                                                                                                                                  how to clean a blender

                                                                                                                                    the right way to eat a popsicle

                                                                                                                                      use bread clips to label and organize power cords

                                                                                                                                        to get the built up residue off of your shower head

                                                                                                                                          user a hair clip to orgainize long wires

                                                                                                                                            a frozen saturated sponge in a bag

                                                                                                                                              rub stuck zipper teeth with a graphite pencil

                                                                                                                                                use a soda pop tab

                                                                                                                                                  50

                                                                                                                                                    51 How to multiply large numbers in your head.

                                                                                                                                                      52 How to open a bottle if you dont have a corkscrew.

                                                                                                                                                        rub a walnut on damaged wooden furniture

                                                                                                                                                          kids fall out of bed

                                                                                                                                                            use toothpaste to clear up hazy car

                                                                                                                                                              58

                                                                                                                                                                59 keep pizza out while driving home

                                                                                                                                                                  60 put your straw through the tab to keep it from rising

                                                                                                                                                                    hold oreos with a fork so your fingers

                                                                                                                                                                      Never lose your remotes again

                                                                                                                                                                        hiding your emergency money

                                                                                                                                                                          use a bread tab to hold your spot on a roll

                                                                                                                                                                            if you are at a hotel and run out of chargers

                                                                                                                                                                              keep a square of cardboard in a ziplock bag

                                                                                                                                                                                If you need to pee or smoke at a bar

                                                                                                                                                                                  drill holes in the bottom of your garbage

                                                                                                                                                                                    use an accented letter as your passcode

                                                                                                                                                                                      use a squeeze ketchup bottle top with your shopvac

                                                                                                                                                                                        do something unusual when locking the door

                                                                                                                                                                                          when heating leftovers space out a circle in the middle

                                                                                                                                                                                            dont burn yourself in those hard to reach candles

                                                                                                                                                                                              put a small amount of water in a glass when you microwave your pizza

                                                                                                                                                                                                75 use a piece of paper to organize

                                                                                                                                                                                                  use half a pool noodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                    pencil case to store cables

                                                                                                                                                                                                      78 clothespin to hold nail

                                                                                                                                                                                                        79 make blts

                                                                                                                                                                                                          80 take a picture of your fridge

                                                                                                                                                                                                            81 fill plastic water bottles

                                                                                                                                                                                                              82 right ways to eat chips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                99 if your plug keeps failing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  100 put the banana on the wire

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    88 before you throw away a post it

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Source: Reddit LifeProTips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      There you go, 100 awesome life hacks that you can try right now to make your life a lot easier!

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