Strength training often involves weightlifting. Here at elevate Health & Performance, it may also include using TRX Bands, Keiser air-powered machines, or your body weight.

The benefits of strength training are well known. In addition to getting stronger, training can help lessen chronic pain. And when you’re stronger, you’re less susceptible to injury. As you train, your endurance goes up, and many people even become more flexible.

Now Gretchen Reynolds of the New York Times – and staff favorite – has written about an exciting new study that relates resistance exercise and body fat percentages measured as your Body Mass Index or BMI. (You can calculate yours online here). The large-scale observational study found that:

Regularly doing any strength training exercise reduces the chances of becoming obese by 20 to 30%.

The elevate team knows strength training well. All of them have 4-year degrees w advanced certifications. But they did wonder: “What’s up? That seems like a big number.” Because their experience has been that when most people lose weight, they gain it back.

As Reynolds notes:

Probably the best way to deal with obesity is to avoid getting fatter.

Easier said than done, the team thought.

Researchers at Iowa State in Ames led the study. They pulled over 12,000 medical records of mostly middle-aged people who went to Cooper Clinic in Dallas from 1987 to 2005. None of them were obese based on their BMI.

Clinicians asked if patients engaged in “muscle-strengthening exercises.” If they answered “yes,” the clinic then asked about how often patients exercised and for how many minutes per week.

Researchers then cross-checked patient visits from week to week, checking their weight and BMI.

Men and women who trained a few times a week for a total of one or two hours were 20% or more less likely to become obese as they age. These benefits persisted with controls for age, sex, smoking, and aerobic exercise. It was still strength training that made the difference.

We passionately believe that exercise including strength training improves your health.

Staying trimmer adds another benefit. When you’re ready to get started, we’re here. Contact us here.

You can learn more about what we do here.