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Weightlifting Heart Benefits

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Bodybuilding and Fitness Newsletter 5/24/2017

Weightlifting Benefits for the Heart

During the 1980's the world somehow got addicted to aerobics exercise because of people like Jane Fonda that told everyone about the benefits for the heart doing aerobics exerc1ise has. Along with fat-loss it started the fitness boom that saw the average person joining a gym and bouncing to music.

But it seems the benefits of bodybuilding for the heart were ignored because only recently has sports science published recent studies done on the benefits of training with weights for the heart. The evidence showed was clear that it has both a short-term benefit and a long-lasting benefit.

The study done was to specifically show the cardiac benefits by comparing aerobics to weight training. They did this by selecting 100 volunteers and putting them into two different groups. The one group would do 30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobics 3 times a week, (training with 65% of max).

The second group did 3 sets of 10 reps with a weight that was 65% of their maximum. For any bodybuilders reading this, they would surely think that comparing 5 minutes of pushing a weight for 3 sets and comparing the benefits to 30 minutes of medium intensity is unfair.

Dr. R. Scott was the sports scientist in charge of the study and in his summary explains that those 3 sets done for 3 times a week for 6 weeks showed a marked improvement in the volunteer's cardiovascular health; from increasing the blood flow to the extremities, to an overall increase in the central arterial stiffness.

Compared to the group that did 30 minutes of aerobics 3 times a week, the weight training group showed a long-lasting drop in their blood pressure, averaging a 20% improvement in the volunteers tested. It should also be added that there was a slight increase in the central arterial stiffness found in weight trainers but that was together with an increase in blood flow.

The aerobic group did show a decrease in the central arterial stiffness but WITHOUT an increase in blood flow. Dr. Scott explains that the resistance training done for those 3 sets needs to be done slowly with good form to get the full benefit.

In his conclusion he explains that runners and swimmers would all benefit immensely from doing additional weight training, for an overall improvement in cardiac health. The bottom line is that Jane Fonda need not have spent hours dancing away to music because if she would have just trained with weights for less than half the time she did aerobics, her heart health would've improved more.

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