Weight Training

Ella Bak, JCC Personal Trainer & Fitness Instructor

Everyone has different reasons for wanting to lift weights. Many of these reasons have to do with looking better. But, we can think of more compelling ways of weight lifting. In this post, I give you the information you need to get all the rewards of weight lifting no matter what your level of knowledge about Weight Training--- also known as Resistance Training or Strength Training. What is Weight lifting (Resistance Training, Strength training) ? It is muscular force against resistance. 

Modern living provides every convenience except one, a lot of natural physical activity. From young to old, we ride in cars, use remote controls, step into elevators, play on the computer, and shop online. Many activities that required us to get up out of the chair and use our muscles are limited. To overcome this barrier we need to add weight training to our lives to stimulate our bodies and our brains to keep us healthy and strong. People of all ages kids, teens, young adults, pregnant women, and older adults benefit from resistance training. The risks of doing nothing are greater than the risks of injury from exercise even for the frail and elderly. Whether you’re a beginner who wants to get started safely or you’re already fit and you want to improve your performance, weight training improves your current condition and helps you achieve your goals of feeling stronger and better about yourself. 

Knowing your muscles 

When training, whether doing resistance type of exercise or any other type of physical activity the human body will break down and rebuild all of the muscles every 15 to 30 days, and rebuild the muscle within 24 to 36 hours after training. https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/issa7.htm 

Your body has, on average, 36 percent muscle for females and Male an average 42 percent. https://www.healthline.com/health/muscle-mass-percentage#building-muscle-mass
There are more than 430muscles in the body; these are known as voluntary and involuntary muscles. https://accessphysiotherapy.mhmedical.com/content.aspx?sectionid=40079842&bookid=467 

The key ingredient of muscle is protein. Carbohydrate in particular, as well as fat, specific body chemicals and oxygen, supply the fuel to make muscles move. Muscles can only pull on bones, by doing different muscular actions. Muscles are composed of different fibre types. Fast and slow twitch muscle fibers can help you maximize your muscle growth and performance. The difference between these reflects on the function they are designed for as (endurance) type movements or stronger, more powerful and faster, short-lived ones. 


In general most people have about a 50/50 break down of fast and slow twitch fibers in those muscles used for movement. So which is better? For the average person, the standard mix of about 50% slow twitch and 50% fast twitch is just fine. 

Benefits of Weight Lifting 

Resistance Training is now recognized as a critical means to enhance everyone's health and fitness, regardless of age, gender, or ability. Resistance training preserves and enhances muscle mass, metabolic rate, bone density, improves glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity. It can improve one's ability to engage in daily activities, improve balance, self esteem, enhance endurance, speed, power, agility, improve bad cholesterol, blood pressure, and over all body composition. And leading health organizations recommend regular strength training as part of one's fitness regimen. 


Normally, weight training was primarily used by athletes to enhance performance and/or increase muscular size. With a properly constructed workout program that is tailored to an individuals goals and skills, anyone can strength train and benefit from its influence on health enhancement. 

Our bodies will adapt directly to whatever demands we give them. If we do a particular movement, we will get better at those movements. 

What is your body type? 

The difference between body type and body shape 

There are three main body types, specifically known as somatotypes. These are: ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph. The types can be described in more basic terms as: slim, athletic and rounder. This basic classification derives from the work of the psychologist William Sheldon and his work in the mid 20th century. 

It provides a valuable starting point for body type analysis. This is because it’s possible to identify the ways in which each type typically responds to training and diet thus potentially maximizing training and dietary returns. Your body shape results from how you work out, your diet and your lifestyle, while your body type is a determinant of your genetics. 

Getting Started: 

If you want to get into weight training, start by sorting fact from fiction. Don’t let stories you’ve heard about resistance training keep you from the gym. You’ll reach your fitness goals sooner by speaking to your health care professional to get a clearance if necessary, and finding a qualified personal trainer. When working with a trainer and using the gym, learn some muscle terminology so you’re comfortable with weight lifting. 

Why is Weight Training important? 

Because weight training strengthens your muscles and improves your muscular endurance, you’ll naturally have more energy to be more active throughout the day. As you’re more refreshed and energetic, you feel better and accomplish more, which improves your mood and confidence level. 

Is Weight Training right for you? 

When it comes to weight training, one size doesn’t fit all. In order to create a program that best meets your needs, you need to know what your conditioning level is, what you want to achieve with your training, and how to set goals and monitor your progress for success.

The 50% of all people who begin a new training program quit in the first four to eight weeks. Most people’s reason for quitting is lack of time. The real reason people don’t continue to new exercise programs isn’t lack of time; it's because changing your habits for something new is challenging, especially if motivation is lacking. 

What to expect as a beginner? 

Before beginning any exercise program, ensure that you’re both ready and able. Get clearance from a healthcare professional if necessary. Take time to discover the correct use of equipment and to perform exercises by using good form and technique. 

What are the Benefits of staying consistent with weight lifting? 

Regular weight training improves muscle balance, posture, movement efficiency, stability, and body awareness. All these qualities reduce the likelihood of injury, as well as the onset of typical aches and pains such as those associated with the lower back, knees, shoulders, or hips. Weight training today is for all bodies, not only the body- builders. Whether you’re a mom, an older adult , find a program that suits you. There’s no reason not to get started right away and to enjoy the many benefits weight training has to offer. 

Weight training is an important key to living a full and healthy life from childhood to older age. We lose muscle mass as we age due to the gradual loss of efficiency in the process of cellular reproduction “We lose so much muscle as we age that by the time we’re 70, we only have about 50 to 55 percent of our muscle mass left,” s ays, Beatrice Edwards, M.D., M.P.H., associate professor of medicine and director of the Bone Health and Osteoporosis Center at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine . “That explains why we feel weak and tired as we age, and we can prevent some of that with weight training.” 

Unless you add stimulation to your muscles, such as weight training to maintain or to build muscle mass, you’ll lose your current muscle mass. 


What are some Benefits of Weight Training? 

•Keeping your bones healthy: Lifting weights can slow the rate of bone loss. With strong bones, helps prevent risk of falls, you’ll lower your risk of life-threatening fractures, you won’t become hunched over as you age. No matter your age, it’s never too late to start strengthening your bones. 

•Helping control your weight: When you lose weight through dieting alone or together with some cardio exercise (such as walking or running, cycling), you lose muscle along with fat because our bodies adapt fairly quickly to the load we ask them to move. This can be a problem — when you lose muscle, your metabolism slows down, so you’re more likely to regain the weight. By adding weight training to the mix, you can maintain and/or increase your muscle and thereby increase your metabolism. 

•Increasing your strength: Weight training makes it easier to carry and put away your groceries. It can also keep you out of a nursing home in your older age and help you maintain your balance and independence.
•Improving your heart health:
Studies show that lifting weights can lower your risk of having a heart attack or stroke by lowering your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, reducing blood pressure, improves quality of sleep, reduces stroke, and improves circulations. 


•Improving your quality of life: Any activity that accomplishes all the above makes you a happier, more productive, and more confident person. 

Something to keep in mind, Avoiding overtraining 

Many exercisers become overly enthusiastic after they start getting results and think that if a little is good, even more has to be great. 


Balance your weight training with your other sports activities or cardio training. Weight training provides so many benefits to your life. The risk of overtraining isn’t high, but it’s important to mention so you appreciate the importance of variety in your program, of incorporating rest, and of ultimately listening to your body. 

Finding fitness help: What a trainer can do for you ? 

Personal trainers are famous for sculpting firm bodies quickly with amazing results for celebrities, and a good fitness trainer can do that for you too. 

What to expect from training with a personal trainer?
Achieve Results faster:
Your trainer is an expert at results. Your trainer will help you perform each exercise with a correct technique and at the right intensity, to maximize the benefits of strength training. A trainer can help show you additional moves that meet your specific needs and preferences. If you’re pregnant, a trainer can show you how to perform abdominal exercises without lying on your back and hamstring exercises without lying on your stomach. If you suffer from arthritis, Osteoporosis, a personal trainer can show you how to stretch and strengthen your muscles while alleviating some pain and fatigue. 

Expecting good teaching skills 

If you don’t understand something, a good trainer should be able to find another way of explaining the point. They make sure that you understand not only how to adjust the seat on the equipment or machine, but also why you’re adjusting it that way. 

Updating your routine and program 

A trainer can help you design routines that fit your specific goal, and schedule. Also, good trainers prepare you to venture out into the world alone. 

Avoid Possible Injuries :
When personal training, she/he ensures the type of exercise is suitable to your physiology, skills and fitness level. Your training makes sure each exercise is being performed correctly and to maximize your efficiency, you’re likely to keep using good techniques when you're on your own. 


You show up, do the hard work and let your body do the rest. 

Keeping you motivated 

Time Efficiency: 

No more wasted time in the gym. Every minute of your time is planned and has a purpose. Introducing you to new equipment. A trainer can tell you about the intricacies of each machine in your gym. 

Rewarding and Fun: 

In person training sessions are intense and extremely satisfying. 

Making sure that your personalities mesh 

Trainers are human beings, which means that they come in all different personality types. Interview a few trainers and choose one who makes you feel comfortable. 

Here’s a reminder of how much weight training can benefit you: Weight training on a regular basis improves your strength, endurance, confidence, appearance, health, longevity, and quality of life. Beginning a weight-training program is one of the best decisions you can make for your health, well-being, and physical and mental performance. Consistent weight training helps reduce your stress, manage your weight, strengthen your bones, lower your risk of injury, and gives you a competitive edge in all aspects of life. 

https://www.acefitness.org/education-and-resources/professional/expert-articles/5714/muscle-fiber-types-fast-twitch-v s-slow-twitch/
https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/issa7.htm https://www.healthline.com/health/muscle-mass-percentage#building-muscle-mass