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  1. #1
    Annieh's Avatar
    Annieh is offline Senior Member
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    Any point in learning to lift heavy?

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    I've been taking a weights class twice a week for a year or so now. I love it and it has helped me get strong and fit. Along with eating primal I have lost weight and inches and feel great.

    Now I have the opportunity to learn to lift heavy (whatever that means, I only have the vaguest idea).

    It kind of intrigues me but on the other hand I am not into extremes and do not want to risk injuring myself when I'm feeling the best ever.

    So, just wondering, what would be the point in me upping the ante here? Pros and cons? Other suggestions for new goals.

    My details: Age 48, Gender F, height 5'4", weight 59kg.

  2. #2
    eKatherine's Avatar
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    What sort of equipment were they using in the weights class you took, and what sort of lifts did they teach you to do?

  3. #3
    Annieh's Avatar
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    Just a bar with whatever size plates on it you want to use - from 1kg to 5kg. Squats, lunges, deadlifts and rows, chest press and tricep dips, bicep curls, upright row and overhead press (or whatever you would call it). Interspersed with some cardio and step tracks.

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    Weightlifting is a great way of keeping yourself healthy as you age. If you have an opprtunity to learn, please do. Proper form is important to avoid injuries and get the best out of it.
    Advantages of lifting are huge. First of all, lifting heavy will mean that you keep age related muscle loss (sarcopenia) at bay. Muscle loss starts early - from 30 years or so. Heavy lifting is a great way way to build it or keep from loosing muscle. You are unlikely to gain much muscle at your age although it is not impossible but keeping what you have and making it all stronger is worth the effort. Higher muscle mass is related to higher bone density, better neural function, better metabolic rate, better hormonal and mental health - the benefits are endless. Things like grip strength in older people are correlated closely with life expectancy.
    I am 31 and have started weightlifting a couple of years ago for all of the above reasons. I think it is the best thing I could do from fitness perspective to keep myself healthy and slow down the ageing.

  5. #5
    eKatherine's Avatar
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    Most research on older women seems to have been done using light weights. I think if you do lift heavy, you will put on muscle, perhaps not enough to look muscular or add much lean body mass, but certainly enough to look more toned than ever before.

    I think you should find a gym where they do powerlifting, so you can get help when you need it.

  6. #6
    RichMahogany's Avatar
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    http://startingstrength.com/articles...e_sullivan.pdf

    Read this. You'll decide to lift heavy.

  7. #7
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    also, lifting heavy weights will help stave off the onset of osteoporosis.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by catdance62 View Post
    also, lifting heavy weights will help stave off the onset of osteoporosis.
    When I was a teenager, my mother and I were the same height. When she was the age I am now, she had lost a couple of inches, and I was taller than her. I have not lost any height. In fact I have gained a little since putting up the pullup bar and height markings behind it. I attribute that to back stretching exercise.

    She has taken calcium supplements her whole life, but has never done any exercise. I did a lot of heavy exercise in my 30s.

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    little vase's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eKatherine View Post
    When I was a teenager, my mother and I were the same height. When she was the age I am now, she had lost a couple of inches, and I was taller than her. I have not lost any height. In fact I have gained a little since putting up the pullup bar and height markings behind it. I attribute that to back stretching exercise.
    That's fascinating. Yet another reason to continue my deadlifts and overhead squats.

  10. #10
    spuggygirl's Avatar
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    Do it. Because it's great fun, if for no other reason. It'll also make you feel awesome!

    Best thing I ever did.

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