As we get older a lot of different things start to happen within the body that go hand in hand with aging. Little do people know that by starting the proper weight training program and diet we can actually reverse this process. The same cannot be said about cardiovascular training or cardio.
Let’s go over some things that happen as we get older:
Growth hormone decline. After the age of 30 the production of growth hormone starts to decline at a rate of 1%/year. Growth hormone is often referred to as the “hormone of youth.” Growth hormone helps with fat loss, muscle building, healthy skin, sleep, and bone density. The proper fat loss program will focus on raising GH levels. The amount of growth hormone that an exercise program will produce will be dependent on exercise selection, reps, sets, rest break and tempo. Interval training is another way to stimulate high levels of growth hormone.
Muscle mass decline. As we get older we lose about 1%/year after the age of 30. So by the time we are 60 we have lost approximately 30% of our muscle mass. This can be easily offset with the proper strength training program. It is not uncommon for many of my elderly clients to be stronger and have more muscle mass than people have their age.
Decrease in bone density. As we get older our bones tend to lose density. This is especially true for women where osteoporosis is more common. A proper weight training program that stresses the bones properly will cause an increase in bone density and bone diameter. The stress must be large enough and happen often enough for this to happen. A person will want to use mostly free weights that stress the axial skeleton to get the most from this.
Decrease in blood pressure/resting heart rate. Most people as they get older experience a rise in blood pressure and resting heart rate. This is due both to diet and inactivity. Both of these are easily reversed with the proper diet and exercise program. It is not uncommon for my clients to have better cardiovascular health then people half their age. Most of them have perfect cardiovascular scores. This can be achieved within a very short period of time with the right program.
Blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels are related to diet. These levels are related to diabetes. If you follow the right diet, exercise, and supplement program then you can greatly influence blood sugar levels. Pre diabetics can usually be pulled back into a normal range. Diabetics can greatly reduce their medication and have less spikes and crashes. Weight training is known to increase insulin sensitivity.
To maximally slow down aging it is highly recommended to follow a low carb diet. It is thought that the more insulin you produce the faster you age.
All of these age related declines in health can be reversed with the proper diet and weight training program. But, to be successful they both have to be designed properly. Randomly following a weight training protocol will more than likely not give you the results that you are looking for.