Like everyone else, during these lockdowns, I find it hard to get motivated to exercise regularly. In December, I got out of the habit of doing my regular weight routine for many reasons but as new year started I was back in my gym and got going again. Initially it was as though I hadn’t lifted the same weights for years. I was determined not to drop the weight but there was no way I could do my normal 15 reps. A few weeks later with perseverance, I’m back to lifting 2 sets of at least 15 reps.
Weights are wonderful. If you get into doing regularly (2 or 3 times a week) then it takes only a few weeks to see a change. There are so many reasons to use weights (or resistance bands) regularly. Here’s an article from medical journal that sums it up accurately. By the way, sarcopenia is the medical term for muscle loss with age.
“Muscle mass decreases approximately 3–8% per decade after the age of 30 and this rate of decline is even higher after the age of 60. This involuntary loss of muscle mass, strength, and function is a fundamental cause of and contributor to disability in older people. This is because sarcopenia increases the risks of falls and vulnerability to injury and, consequently, can lead to functional dependence and disability. A decrease in muscle mass is also accompanied by a progressive increase in fat mass and consequently changes in body composition, and is associated with an increased incidence of insulin resistance in the elderly.” ***
Weights are wonderful. When we do strength training and subsequently increase our muscle mass, our BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate, which is the number of calories required to keep your body functioning at rest) increases so we burn more calories whilst just sitting doing nothing. Now that’s worth knowing.
So, here’s what I suggest. Warm up by marching on spot and swinging arms around and other big movements for about 3-5mins.
Get those weights out and do these 5 exercises twice a week
- Chest Press
- Bent over row
- Shoulder Press
- Squat (no weights required)
For all the above do 2 sets of as many repetitions as possible before you tire. If you find that they are able to do more than 30 reps, the you probably need bigger weights
Lie on your front resting on elbows and lift up onto either knees or feet and hold for as long as possible without your back hurting.
Finally stretch all those muscles.
Give it a go and let me know how you get on.