Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Older women may need to exercise only once a week

As we "mature" gals creak around (hey, who you callin' mature), we often are not headed for the gym--Silver Sneakers or not.

Now--maybe--some good news from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Women over 60 may need to work out only one day a week to make a significant improvement in strength and endurance.

This study appeared in the J of Strength and Conditioning Research. They monitored 63 women doing aerobic and strength training for 16 weeks. They were divided into three groups--once a week, twice a week, three times a week.

Significant increases in muscular strength and cardio fitness, as well as function (getting up from a chair, etc), were found--but the increases did not relate to how often the women worked out.

Older females have a problem with adherence (no duh). So this is good news for them.

People tend to believe more is better. Greater frequency and intensity has been shown to benefit younger people--but not older.

In one aspect, the participants did a three-mile-per-hour walk test. The average heart rate was 110. After 16 weeks of both aerobic and strength, the heart rates averaged 92--meaning it took less effort.

Does this shortcircuit all your excuses--probably not. Just think about it.

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