Many women use strength training routine—working out with resistance, such as weights—to tone and slim their muscles.
Without special training and diet, women do not develop the large, bulky muscles so common in men who work out with weights or using resistance training.
Still, women do develop muscle, and because muscle naturally burns more calories than fat, this type of exercise helps keep women fit.
Even though older women may no longer be building new muscle mass, resistance training can help them be stronger.
A recent study compared two small groups of women, some in their 80s, and some in their late teens/early 20s.
Before the study, the older women had smaller thigh muscles than the younger participants, and showed less strength with extending their knees. After the study the older women could lift more weight, showing that their muscles were stronger, even though the size of their muscles did not change.
Muscle loss often happens as we age. Regular exercise not only helps us maintain muscle mass as well as health, regular weight bearing exercise also helps us keep our bones strong and avoid the problems associated with osteoporosis. Older women now have a new option for maintaining their health.