Postdate: 20 March 2017
Strength training is more than just lifting weights. Contrary to what is often said, it is not restricted to certain age groups or just for men. In the long term, it often improves your back muscles, balance, and flexibility but most importantly, you create more muscle mass and stronger bones.
Cardio versus strength
Strength training consists of a series of high-resistance exercises that you often for a short period. You can use your own body weight, such as with push-ups, mountain climbers, deadlifting, squats, and lunges. These are just a few exercises you can combine with or without weights. Exercising in itself releases positive hormones, so this is also the case during strength training. Cardio training such as cycling and walking is particularly good for your fitness, but it contributes less to the strengthening of muscles and bones. When this strengthening is what you need, it is good to integrate strength training into your exercise pattern. To build up muscle mass, you need proteins you get from protein-rich nutrition. This also helps to lose weight as your muscles constantly need energy. Thus, your burning of calories increases! Another additional advantage is that you can do these kinds of exercises by making small adjustments at home, at work, or outdoors.
Strength training from your desk chair
It can be quite embarrassing to do strength exercises in front of your colleagues during a break, but they will get you started to exercise throughout the day. There are also some exercises no one will hardly notice, such as tightening your (buttock) muscles every now and then, pushing yourself up from the armrests of your chair – while you sit on the edge of the seat – lifting your legs one by one for about 30 second while you pull in your navel. You could even do this exercise during a meeting! Are you a rookie and you want to become stronger by doing heavy lifting exercises? An alternating schedule offers tricks and tools to train as effectively as possible without running the risk of overburdening your muscles. Doing a warming-up and cooling-down is essential.
There are countless strength exercises you can do behind your desk in a simple manner. The trick is to make them part of your working routine. Most exercises take little time and can be done without anyone noticing it, but they still contribute to the strengthening of your muscles.
‘Be stronger than your strongest excuse’