4 Ways Your Workouts Are Aging You Faster
You’re Running Too Much
Running is one of those things that tend to make most professional health experts feel forced to choose a side of extremism.
Running zealots think it’s fantastic for endorphin release, cardiorespiratory fitness, fat loss, and keeping the muscles active. Gym aficionados believe running damages joints, creates plenty of imbalances throughout the body, minimally helps change the metabolism, and promotes poor posture. The truth is, both groups are right.
Running is fine — the problem is, most of the people who do it, do it way more than they should, compared to training to improve strength and promote muscle and skeleton balance. The result: The joints get pulled on much more from the muscles of one side of the body than the other, and chronic pain worsens as time goes on. Remember to strengthen more often than you go running.
You’re Not Lifting Weights
In harmony with the above subheading, people mistakenly think there are a number of ways to improve strength, and end up thinking that Yoga, Zumba, or boot camp-style classes do the job just fine for making muscles and bones stronger. Don’t be fooled — this can be the slow demise of your body’s fortitude as you get older. The only way for you to build strength is to apply forces against heavy resistances. It takes hitting the weights in the gym using an intelligent training program to truly accomplish this. And doing this doesn’t mean you’ll get bigger — it means you’ll get stronger. Set the foundation now, and get strong before you get injured.
You Use Poor Technique
You’re in the gym, ready to pump iron, and you’re doing it four days a week, compared to three days of running. So you’ve got it all figured out, right?
The next thing to worry about is your form. You can just as quickly get injured if you use poor lifting technique, especially when it involves heavier weights. It doesn’t make muscles “work harder” — there’s more to it than that. Poor lifting technique will create undue stress on joints, and potentiate a muscle strain or tear, or a tendon or ligament injury. Pay attention to your form, use a spotter, and invest in the help if a professional if at all possible.
More exercise is always better than less.
That is, until your nervous system and neurotransmitters give you the finger. Most people reading this are everyday individuals with everyday jobs. That means you’re not a professional athlete who gets paid to train. Your full time responsibilities exceed just your workouts. That means frequent training will probably take a larger toll on your central nervous system, and increase the need for you to rest and recover to compensate. You’ll notice overtraining making itself manifest by way of:
• Decreased performance during workouts (you’re not as strong, not as fast, etc)
• Decreased energy levels
• Lowered libido
• A plateau in results (both in performance and in physical change)
• Lowered body temperature in the evening compared to morning
• Lingering body soreness
If you’re someone who tries to work out every day, start by taking one to two days ofcomplete rest each week. You’ll likely notice a difference in a short time. Persisting in a workout regime that involves overtraining will result in elevated stress levels, early “burnout,” and most likely a decreased life expectancy.
If you want to lose weight, look younger, achieve your ideal body and live longer,then avoid these five steps.