Today I would like to take a look at the 3 main reasons resistance training can help us prevent injury, and need to look at the skeleton and the connective tissue and muscles which provide support.
Because bone is living tissue, it has the ability to remodel and adapt to the physical stresses imposed on it. Individuals who are physically active have been shown to have greater bone mineral density than sedentary individuals. In general, physically active people are at a reduced risk for osteoporosis, fracture or other ailments related to bone deterioration. it does appear that resistance training provides the greatest osteogenic (increase in bone mineral density) effect.
Increases in the size of connective tissues ( tendons & ligaments) as a result of resistance training are thought to be the result of an increase in the collagen content within the connective tissue sheaths.
Decreases in muscle mass (sarcopenia) and reductions in muscle strength as we age not only results in a loss of functional ability, but also increases the risk for falls and fractures. Resistance training programs for an aging population have the same benefits for increase in both strength and muscle size as programs do for the younger and more active population. As muscle strength is maintained or improved, the risk for injury is greatly reduced.
Your as old as your bones, keep them young.
Two more hormones
Two more little gremlins to consider in the weight loss continuum, Ghrelin & Cortisol.
Ghrelin is secreted from the stomach and sends signals to your brain telling you to eat, generally they rise before a meal and suppress after eating.
Reducing calories in your diet may well lead to a increase in Ghrelin leaving you feeling the need to constantly eat. Ghrelin appears to be related to the stress hormones which may well explain the need for food when we get stressed.
The other hormone I refer to is a stress hormone called cortisol which is stimulated when the body is stressed, emotional and physical. Fight or flight syndrome. Cortisol is thought to have many adverse effect on the body raising blood sugar levels and decreasing immune function, amongst other things.
The hormone subject is huge and very complex as they all work together, and an imbalance in one will effect the other. It is an area still under investigation in the science world.
Diet and lifestyle does appear to have a dramatic effect on hormones, so I think the best we can do is try and eat real food, exercise and chill out more.
This week I am focusing on a hormone that could be of critical importance in the weight loss area, LEPTIN.
Modern science is now very much trying to discover the true effect leptin has on fat metabolism, but all the early signs suggest this may be one of the most important things we need to balance if we want to lose weight and keep it off.
This hormone is crucial in body composition as it is in charge of fat regulation. It tells the brain whether or not the body has enough fat stored. The problem here is that as with insulin, our modern diet has mixed up the messages and the brain continues to urge the body to store more fat by slowing down our metabolic rate.
Leptin is a hormone which is manufactured in fat tissue, so the more fat we have the more leptin we produce. Therefore, people who carry more fat will be producing more leptin and in theory the more leptin going to the brain the more fat your body will want to burn.
So why do overweight people struggle to burn fat?
This could well have something to do with Leptin resistance. Your brain is receiving leptin but the door is shut, it no longer has the ability to use it!
Insulin surges are one cause of leptin resistance. Calorie restriction, overeating and alcohol are a few others.