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Latest Research Shows Strength Training Increases Lifespan

A recent New York Times article reviewed the latest finding regarding strength training and mortality. Various forms of physical activity have been shown to increase lifespan. But what is still unclear is the type and duration of activity that work best. New research has shed some light on this topic, so let’s take a look.

Latest Research

A new study published in the British Journal of Medicine looked at the health benefits of aerobic exercise and strength training. They concluded either aerobic exercise or strength training was associated with a lower risk of dying. In terms of duration, the sweet spot was one to three hours a week of aerobic exercise and one to two weekly strength training sessions. Subjects who met these guidelines had even a lower mortality risk. This research paper is the latest evidence on the importance of strength training.

Many researchers were happy to hear that a combination of weekly cardio and strength offered health benefits. Those subjects who added a minimum of two weekly strength sessions, however, experienced even better results.

A second meta-analysis, published in the The British Journal of Sports Medicine, was also able to quantify the effect of strength training on longevity. This study showed 30-60 minutes of strength training a week offered the largest reduction.

Additional Study Data

Here is a breakdown on what you can expect from regular bouts of physical activity. The study reported the following:

  • Individuals who engaged in one hour of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity a week had a 15 percent lower mortality risk.
  • The mortality risk was 27 percent lower for those who did three hours of aerobic exercise a week.
  • Finally, subjects who took part in one to two strength-training sessions per week had an even lower mortality risk. A full 40 percent lower risk than those who didn’t exercise at all. Pretty impressive huh?

Final Thoughts

Researchers admit that it has been difficult to pull data from these types of longitudinal studies because the number of people who exercise is so low. Even in this particular study, just 24 percent of subjects reported doing regular strength training (as opposed to 63 percent who said they did aerobic workouts). This seems to go hand-in-hand with a report stating 80 percent of Americans don’t meet the CDC guidelines of 150-minutes of moderate exercise a week.

Those who keep daily workout records, especially strength training, have been shown to (1) stick with exercise longer and (2) get better results. That is where the Jefit app comes into play!

Stay Stronger Together

Jefit, named best strength training app by Sports Illustrated, Esquire, GQ, Men’s Health, Greatest, Forbes Health, and many others. We offer a community responsible for 92,000,000 workouts to date! The app, which recently passed 10 million downloads, comes equipped with a customizable workout planner and training log. The app also has ability to track data, offer audio coaching cues, and can share workouts with friends. Visit our members-only Facebook group. Connect with like-minded people, share tips, and advice to help get closer to reaching your fitness goals.

Michael Wood, CSCS
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