So, what’s the deal with strength training? And should moms strength train?

Personally, I’ve always been kind of a cardio queen, but recently I decided it would be a smart change of pace to start lifting and building up my lean muscle. After all, I want to be strong and confident in my abilities to do ALL THE Things at home and at the gym. We can all agree that strength training is a key component of overall health and fitness for EVERYONE! Especially for us moms.

Strength training is essential for building lean muscle, but did you know that if you don’t continue to use those muscles you will start to lose them. Lean muscle mass naturally diminishes with age. In addition to less muscle mass and to make it a bit more challenging for us ladies, our body fat percentage will increase over time. So, if you don’t do anything to replace the lean muscle you lose over time your body converts that lean muscle into fat…totally not cool, right? Strength training can help you preserve and enhance your muscle mass at any age. And that is very cool!

Strength training may enhance your quality of life and improve your ability to do everyday activities. It can also protect your joints from injury. Building muscle also can contribute to better balance and may reduce your risk of falls. Research tells us that women can significantly benefit from lifting weights. Yet, despite study after study, many women opt for cardio instead of weight training. In fact, lifting weights gives you the edge over belly fat, aches & pains, stress, heart disease, and cancer – and it is also a great way to make you feel empowered! Here are my top reasons why I believe strength training is SO important for moms.

#1 It helps with stress.

One of the best ways to reduce stress is to be in shape. There are two parts to this; the exercise itself reduces stress. The other is that if you are fit, the effects of stress are lessened. So, exercise is a fantastic way for strong moms to fight back against stress. Stress is a contributor to just about every disease we know about. But the good news is you can do something about it!

#2 ENERGY!!!

Why should moms strength train? It gives you the energy you need to keep up with your kids. I have a 5-year-old and a 9-year-old that keep me REALLY BUSY. I’ll be honest and tell you it can be tough trying to keep up with them! Being fit gives strong moms the energy to be involved in their child’s play, activities, and lives! I can remember being a child and my mom always playing with me, and I want to give that to my sons too as they grow up.

#3 This is my favorite benefit!!

It sets an excellent example for your children. Childhood obesity is on the rise AND YOU MAY ASK…What is the number one way to defeat it? Be a good example yourself! Research tells us that sociological factors such as the parents’ lifestyle, nutrition, and fitness are the top factors in the health of children. So, it’s simple…if you want your child to make healthy choices that serve them well in their life, then you need to be willing to make those same healthy choices for yourself. Always leading them by example.

Why Should Mom’s Strength Train?

#4 It lets you be there for your kids.

Let’s face it, people who are healthy and in shape live longer! On average, individuals who worked out for at least 15 minutes a day lived 3-8 years longer than those who don’t. We all want to see those special moments in our kids’ lives, like college graduations, weddings, and grandkids. But you must get there. Strength training 3x a week can help you get there!

#5 It significantly aids in postpartum recovery.

Strength training is smart training for postpartum. Studies have shown that people who build greater full body strength have an advantage in managing their intra-abdominal pressure during activity. And improved pressure management strategies may decrease your risk of developing a pelvic floor or core dysfunction or help you recover from one if you have an existing issue. Combining intentional breath work with strength training can help maintain, improve or retrain the “reflexive” action of your core and pelvic floor. They need to be strong to support your body during pregnancy and during your return to higher impact activities after the baby is born.

Final Thoughts…

Let’s get back to the question at hand, should moms strength train? Strong moms are made every day when they must make hard decisions about real-life things…health, finances, activities their kids can participate in, schedules, and even how much screentime their kids should have. Being a mom requires a lot of strength that you never imagine needing, but many find that self-care is the first step to training for whatever it is you are working towards. And strength training is a great place to start with taking care of yourself!