Dr. Greg Green of Green Chiropractic believes that strength is our most important physical attribute. “There aren’t a lot of physical attributes that we have control over. Your looks are largely determined by your genetics. But you can transform your body through strength and endurance training,” Dr. Green explains. “Over the years, I’ve learned that strength training is a better use of my time in the gym.”
Recent studies conducted by RAND Corporation and the University of Michigan found that Baby Boomers are more likely than the previous generation to have a disability as they near late-life. They are more likely to be obese and have back and neck problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, and generally lower mobility. Not only will they live shorter lives, their failing health will have ripple effects throughout the economy.
Joining the United States are dozens of countries including Japan, Thailand, Sweden, Germany, and Italy that are also preparing for the public health and economic impact of their aging Baby Boomer population.
“None of us are getting any younger,” says Dr. Green. “I agree with Mark Rippetoe when he says that being a strong old person is much more fun than being a weak one.” Mark Rippetoe, author of Starting Strength a practical guide to strength training which has been praised as one of the most useful fitness books ever published, still teaches weightlifting techniques at the age of 58.
Rippetoe bucks conventional wisdom that equates “exercise” with “cardio.” He teaches that a properly designed strength training program is a much better use of the same amount of time that a “cardio” workout takes. It provides far more benefits to your quality of life – especially if you are older.
According to Rippetoe, using muscles in ways that makes them stronger also improves the way the body handles blood sugar that can cause metabolic problems like diabetes. Strength training also combats the loss of muscle mass as we age. “The loss of muscle mass means the loss of strength, which means the loss of physical capacity,” explains Rippetoe.
“It’s better to spend your time doing a correctly designed program of full range-of-motion barbell exercises that use progressively heavier resistance than doing ‘cardio,’” says Rippetoe. “I’m suggesting that you think about it a little more before you decide to just keep putting one foot in front of the other for a couple of miles for the rest of your non-strong life.”
Consult your physician before beginning any form of exercise or strength training. To learn more about how short-term chiropractic treatment can speed recovery from sports and exercise-related injuries, visit GregGreenDC.com.