Using Weights To Improve Physical Fitness

Strength Training

Whatever your age or difficulty, it seems training with weights can help you. Eventually, a whole body regimin could be introduced into your exercise routine, but where (and how limited) would you like to start? I chanced onto Jane Fonda’s routine in “Complete Workout”.

As I look back, my activities could have pointed out weaknesses: my legs, through ballet, bicycling, and walking were my strength and my poor performance in softball and chin-ups indicated a weak upper body.

When we’re busy juggling child care, housework, all the car travel time, collapsing on the couch, I don’t think we have time to assess our loss of good posture, muscle strength and flexibility.

From adolescence we’re thinking “What shape am I?” However, that simply clouds our viewpoint even more.When it hurts to turn your neck while driving, or exhausts you to lug groceries from the car, or your two-year-old outruns you, that the hint starts growing in your awareness.

shoulder exercise

So, where’s your weak spot? Your back and shoulders? Lower back? Legs,abdominals? All of the above? Get yourself some wristweights and/or dumb bell free weights or even some soup cans.

My Method When Using Weights

Stretch a little first – the “cat” where on all fours the back is arched, then slowly dropped to a concave position: then get up to stretch your hands as high as possible circling outward and sweeping slowly up.

Move your head around, or better yet, get a book on stretching and another on weight exercises ( the libraries always have several )and go through a series as recommended.

Shoulder Shrugs

After you’ve warmed your muscles, take your hand weights and shrug your shoulders while keeping a straight arm, roll down and shrug again. Repeat these moves in repetitions of 8-12. I like to start here and add these in between more taxing moves. Ready for more?

Work Those Abs

Something people don’t always realize is that strengthening the abdominals improves your back strength and relieves lower back pain. As you improve the strength of the back and abdominal muscles, your posture improves, as well.

That benefit alone can make you look ten pounds thinner! Benefits, benefits!

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

One way to use weights is to add some challenge to other exercises with wrist or ankle weights that strap on with velcro. Try the leaning camel and then get some floor work done with your crunches.

So, flatten your back to the floor and crunch a little; this is one of the exercises that you can do daily. Confession: no, I don’t do these daily, but I think I’ll try, how about you?

situp

Cross train

Cross training programs such as The Firm series of videos combine aerobic and weight training. In the video above a workout in a pool of water takes the stress off joints.

There are many books to guide your in the how-tos, and plenty of online information. A set of weights, a video or book, plus a small amount of time, and you are ready to get fit!


Weight training has benefits in many areas of health. Indicated for prevention of osteoporosis problems, increases metabolism once muscle mass is increased, besides helping to sculpt your body shape.

mind and body connection
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