Muscle – the organ of longevity!
We are all pretty aware these days of the importance of exercise as we get older and the benefits we get both physically and mentally from regular exercise.
What is less understood is the life changing benefits of preserving and building our muscle as we get older. Muscle is an incredible organ that has a range of influences on our body including functional strength and independence, metabolic and hormonal, bone health and chronic disease prevention.
But not all exercise is the same when it comes to building good quality muscle. As much as walking is a fabulous exercise for our cardio vascular and mental health, it doesn’t quite cut when it comes to building our muscle. Our muscle needs to be progressively loaded to provide a stimulus for growth. This means it needs to be fatigued to a degree that requires the muscle fibres to become stronger and adapt for the next time it is required to work.
This stimulus may be in the form of body weight, resistance bands, weights or through specialised machines. Your muscles don’t know the difference between what is making it work just that it needs to adapt and get stronger.
Getting started with strength exercise may be a little more challenging than taking yourself off for a walk around the block, but it’s worth investing in getting the right type of advice to provide a safe and personalised strength program for you. Often there are other considerations that need to be taken into account including knees, shoulders or lower back. But don’t let these muscloskeletal conditions hold you back! An accredited exercise physiologist can design a strength program for you and help you start building and preserving your muscle right through your life. It is never too late to start building your muscle and experience the benefits of this longevity organ.