The potential for resistance training to improve all health outcomes is evident. Resistance exercise improves and or maintains muscle mass as we age. Without resistance exercise, we lose muscle mass and that results in a slower metabolic rate. The key to effective weight management is to maintain muscle mass while we lose body fat. If we diet without resistance exercise we lose both muscle and fat resulting in a slower metabolism. This results in the eventual reacquisition of body fat.
The solution is a modest exercise program of 1-3 days per week of resistance exercise and 3-5 days of cardiovascular exercise, all sessions at about 30 minutes. Combine this exercise program with modest reductions in calorie consumption and you are on your way to long-term body composition changes. Extreme calorie reduction coupled with excessive exercise of several hours per week is not the best approach. This extreme approach may also result in loss of muscle mass and a reduction in metabolic rate.
The take-home message here is Balance. Develop and follow an exercise and nutrition program with the concept of balance at the forefront.