The topic of strength training seems to have come up a lot recently in my coaching calls. So, let’s talk about strength training for a few minutes, shall we?
I have to start with a bit of a disclaimer. My husband is a Strength and Conditioning Coach at West Virginia University. In May of 2021, he was named a Master Strength and Conditioning Coach (MSCC) by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches association (CSCCa). The honor is the highest given in the strength and conditioning coaching profession. My father-in-law was a Strength Coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers for many years and was widely known as one of the strongest players in the NFL. My knowledge pales in comparison to theirs … but I also have learned quite a lot from them both over the years. I know who to ask when I do have questions!
Most of the clients I work with aren’t concerned about winning Division I Wrestling Tournaments or NFL games … but that doesn’t mean that strength training isn’t important for them. Check out this infographic from the American College of Sports Medicine that lists some of the conditions that research has shown will benefit from a strength training program.
Most people that I work with are concerned that gaining muscle will slow their weight loss. Honestly, this could be true, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a good thing. Even if the weight loss slows, it is actually an indication that the body composition is changing … and that is a really good thing for overall health. More of your body weight being composed of muscle means you burn more calories even at rest. Muscle cells just need more energy. This means that being stronger will help with overall weight loss over time and is incredibly important for weight maintenance once a healthy weight has been achieved.
Let’s talk about life in general. My heart hearts for people I see as they age struggling to get out of a chair or out of a car. That motion that they are struggling with is essentially a squat … one of the most basic lower body strength training moves.
And if you are a woman, I get even more passionate about increasing muscle strength, because increased muscle strength increases both bone strength and balance. Fall prevention at its core!
The fun thing is how much variety there is in strength training programs. With a little bit of trial and error, you are sure to find something that you at least won’t dread. And I’m willing to be over time you will be so proud of the results, you will almost look forward to your workouts.
What are you willing to do today?
Katie Kolb - Health Coach