Want to Get Stronger? Time to Engage In Resistance Training
Sun, April 11, 2021

Want to Get Stronger? Time to Engage In Resistance Training



Resistance training involves the use of resistance for muscle contraction to help build your strength, the size of your skeletal muscles, and anaerobic endurance, explained Better Health Channel, a provider of health and medical information. This activity emphasizes the principle that your muscles will overcome a resistance force, thereby strengthening your muscles when you consistently engage in resistance training. You can use free weights, medicine balls, resistance bands, or your own body weight when doing resistance training at home or in the gym.  


Surveys About Fitness and Working Out

Muscle and Strength, a supplement store and a website that contains free workouts, found in their 2017 survey that the biggest challenges of working out were creating their own diets (71%) and finding it difficult to maintain a proper diet (43%). When asked how many days a week the respondents work out, 35.2% said five days per week, 30.7% answered six days a week, 17% answered four days a week, 8.9% stated seven days a week, 7.2% said three days per week, and ~1.2% stated two days a week.

When asked how long they have been working out, 34.4% stated one to three years, 23.2% answered three to five years, 17.4% said five to 10 years, and 9.9% said 10 to 20 years. Another 9.9% said they have been working out for less than a year while 5.2% stated they have been doing so for more than 20 years.

Regarding the respondents’ goal for working out, 84% said their goal was to build muscle, 57% tried to increase strength, and 49% hoped to lose fat. Interestingly, only 20% said they exercise for fun. 86% worked out in a gym, 33% worked out at home, and 21% worked out outside. However, only 7% of participants worked out at their workplace.

70.5% followed a diet versus 29.5% of those who do not follow one. When asked who created their diet, 70% said they made it themselves, 12.9% used a website, and 9.3% said it was their personal trainer. Further, 26.3% said they consume 2,001 to 2,500 calories daily, followed by 2,501 to 3,000 (23.8%), 1,501 to 2,000 (20.6%), 3,001 to 3,500 (12.2%), 1,000 to 1,500 (8%), and 3,501 to 4,000 (5%).

In another 2020 survey by Tellwut, an online survey platform, 40% of over 2,500 respondents who spent money on fitness before the pandemic were no longer spending money to stay active during stay-at-home orders, reported press release distribution website PR Newswire, via Yahoo! Finance, a part of Yahoo! Network’s media property.

16% said they will continue to not spend money on fitness even when gyms are open while 52% said they were still spending on fitness, albeit less during the pandemic while remaining physically active. 31% of respondents were expecting to maintain this decrease in spending after the end of stay-at-home measures.

However, 21% said they purchased equipment for their home gym during the crisis while 49% said they already owned equipment before social distancing measures were implemented. Among the equipment the respondents purchased included treadmills, free weights, and a variety of stationary bikes. 13% of those who did not work out prior to the pandemic were now doing so at home while 14% of those who previously worked out at home increased their daily physical activity.  



What Are the Benefits of Resistance Training?

Engaging in resistance training on a regular basis helps minimize the risk of heart disease by reducing your body fat and blood pressure while improving cholesterol and decreasing the stress placed on your heart while lifting a load, stated Phil Goulding of Nuffield Health, the UK’s largest healthcare charity.

If it is done through weight training, it can decrease your risk of sarcopenia or the age-related decline in muscle and osteoporosis. Resistance training also builds your strength, making everyday tasks easier. Aside from that, it helps tone your arms, legs, and bottom.


What Are the Principles of Resistance Training?

1.      Program

This refers to your overall fitness program, which should be composed of various types of exercises like flexibility training, aerobic training, strength training, and balance exercises.

2.      Weight

Different weights or other types of resistance equipment like a 3 kg. hand weight or fixed weight will be used for various exercises during your session.



3.      Reps and Sets

Reps are defined by the number of times you repeat each exercise in a set. Meanwhile, a set is a group of repetitions that are performed without resting. An example would be two sets of squats by 15 reps entail that you perform 15 squats and then resting before doing another 15 reps of squats.

4.      Progressive Overload Principle

You have to use an appropriate weight or resistance force that will challenge your muscles, so adjusting the frequency, duration, the exercises for each muscle group, and the number of exercises for each one (including sets and reps) can help improve your fitness.

5.      Recovery

Your muscles need time to recover and adapt after exercising. Opt to rest a particular muscle group for up to 48 hours before engaging the same group again.  



How Do I Get Started With Resistance Training?

You don’t have to go to a gym to do resistance training, reminded Jennifer R. Scott of VeryWell Fit, a reader’s trusted source for information on eating well and exercising. If you don’t own equipment for resistance training, you can utilize gravity and your own body weight by doing push-ups, lunges, and squats.  

Start low to avoid injury and burn out— lift lighter weights first and prioritize performing each exercise while maintaining good form or alignment. Engage in eight to ten exercises that work your body’s major muscle groups. This should be done two to three times a week. Begin with one set of each exercise, which should be composed of eight reps that are performed no more than twice a week.

Your goal is to gradually add two to three sets for each exercise you do, which should have eight to 12 reps every second or third day. Consider progressing further into your resistance training if you can comfortably do 12 reps of an exercise.

Resistance training is beneficial to build strength and muscle, but those who engage in this activity should let their muscles rest to give them time to repair. People can also consider getting a support system who will encourage them to improve and to hold them accountable. Having a support system makes working out a more pleasant experience for the person.