When we think about the benefits of strength training most often times we focus strictly on the physical benefits, lowered risk of heart disease, better insulin sensitivity, increased metabolic rate, improved body composition and posture. Many times we forget to look at the mental benefits from strength training. More recently research has turned towards discovering what positive impacts strength training has on participant’s mental health. You will find that there are many common mental ailments that can be relieved by incorporating a solid strength training program into your weekly routine.
15% of the US population is reported to experience anxiety symptoms lasting anywhere from 15-30 days a month. It is normal to experience feelings of anxiety centered around upcoming challenges such as interviews, presentations, tests, etc. Those symptoms should subside after the event is over however, those with chronic anxiety will start to experience sleep deprivation, mental distress, and bodily pain. From seven research studies researchers have been able to conclude that resistance training have had an impact with subduing anxiety symptoms.
25% of the US population suffers from symptoms of chronic fatigue. 94% of the 70 randomized research studies on exercise and fatigue show that a regular strength training program has a greater impact on chronic fatigue symptoms than drug or cognitive behavioral interventions.
A personality characteristic that is tied in with self-worth, self-respect, and self-integrity, increased self-esteem is a direct benefit of resistance training. Research discovered that resistance training not only improved self-esteem among healthy adults, but also among populations with cancer, depression, or undergoing cardiac rehabilitation.
We spend about 30% of our lives sleeping. Consistent sleep deprivation (6 hours or less a night) has been associated with cognitive impairment, mental illness, hypertension, obesity, stroke, cardiovascular disease, and a diminished quality of life. Physically active individuals have much better sleep patterns. Interestingly, depressed individuals found a 30% improvement in sleep quality following 8 weeks of consistent strength training.
In summary, it is crucial a healthy lifestyle to incorporate proper nutrition habits, cardiovascular exercise, flexibility and strength training exercises. All of these elements together help the body and mind thrive. It isn’t until you are able to get these four factors in sync that you can experience true health. If you have some but not all these components down, feel free to contact me. I would be more than happy to discuss how you can incorporate them into your life!
Certified San Diego fitness trainer Andrea King touches all four areas with every one of her San Diego personal training clients. No matter what their fitness level is or their goals, she helps them discover true balance within their own program.