Why building muscles makes you healthier
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Going to the gym and lifting weights has become entrenched in our modern life. Too many of us work at a desk all day and need some exercise later in order to stay fit and healthy. Weight-lifting in order to build muscle is touted as being a great way to stay healthy, but do you know exactly why? Let’s find out.
You must have guessed that one. Building muscles helps make you lose fat, if you have any excess fat. The intense effort is certainly a calorie-burning activity but there is even better news.
Muscles are like a furnace at burning fat. After an intense burst of activity such as weight-lifting, your muscles do not simply switch off and go to sleep or rest but they continue to burn energy and therefore fat. So the more muscles you build and the more you activate during training, the more fat you burn not only during your training session, but also afterwards, throughout the day and even at night while sleeping. How good does that sound – lose fat while sleeping? By contrast, cardio activities such as running and cycling only burn fat during the physical activity.
Stronger bones to support powerful muscles
Another widely known benefit of building muscles versus cardio activities is that you build yourself stronger, denser bones in the process. It makes sense after all. The human skeleton, made up of bones, is like a frame and supports the body. Muscles are attached to the bones and move your limbs. As your muscles become more powerful, they exert more strain on the bones. If the bones don’t keep up in strength, they will shatter. So the human body compensates by increasing the density of the bone and therefore its strength at supporting bigger muscles.
The long-terms benefits are even better because it is widely known that old people, especially women, suffer of osteoporosis, a health condition that leads to very fragile bones. Weight-lifting effectively helps combat this condition but only if you start early enough.
Stronger tendons and ligaments
After stronger bones, we also have stronger ligaments and tendons, the body tissues that connect muscles to the bones. Again, it’s something akin to the weakest link in a chain. If you bone and muscles are both very powerful but ligaments are weak, either you’ll be limited in building more muscles, or your ligaments will get injured. Your body thus takes pre-emptive action by also making you ligaments and tendons stronger. In everyday life, you might not notice the direct benefits as opposed to being stronger but stronger connective tissues translate in fewer injuries like a twisted ankle or weak wrists.
Retaining muscle mass in old age
We talked about poor bone condition in old age. The body also loses muscle mass as we get older. This is why old people have trouble walking, running, going up the stairs or even keeping their balance. They are losing muscles and getting weaker. Physical movement becomes a challenge. And if they ever fall as a result, they could easily break a limb because of their fragile bones. Again, weight-lifting helps slow down this process by building muscles or at least keeping existing muscles functional and healthy. Wouldn’t you rather be a fit 90 years’ old rather than wheelchair-bound? You know what to do then.
We have mentioned a few of the best health benefits you can get if you start building muscles from today. It helps long-term fat loss, fights osteoporosis, retains muscle mass or increases it if you are still young and helps avoid injuries such as a twisted ankle. And there is no excuse if you have a home gym. So start working hard and staying healthy by visiting Iron Simba to find out guides and tips on working out and keeping fit.