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Two recent studies published in the Journal of Gerontology reported the results of tests by two leading universities on
men and women ages 60-75.

    Sizable Strength and Endurance Increases
    One study used men only. Scientists found that leg muscle strength increased up to 84
    percent over 16 weeks among those who did weight-training-type exercises at an
    intensity that matches gym rats in their twenties. Increases in muscle fiber size among
    the older exercisers were reported to be proportionate to the gains showed by younger
    exercisers.

    "Elderly men cannot only tolerate these very high workloads," the Journal reported,
    "but will exhibit muscular changes similar to their younger counterparts."

    The studies used healthy men who kept active but did no regular weight training. Nine
    were put on a training program that had them doing leg extensions. The men first did
    10 repetitions at 50 percent of the maximum they could lift at one time. They then did
    three sets of 6-8 repetitions at 80-85 percent of their one-time maximums. The men did
    this twice a week. The other nine did no weight training and served as a comparison
    group.

Although both groups were similar at the start, the exercisers had pulled well ahead at the end of the 16 weeks. They
averaged 50 percent better on the extension, 72 percent better on the press and 84 percent better on the half squat,
the study said.

The scientists also found the exercisers gained endurance. As a result, the men's hearts had to work less hard at a
given intensity in a treadmill test. There was no such improvement in the non-exercising comparison group.

The exercise paid off in lifestyle improvements. All of the men indicated they felt better. They were doing more things.
They felt much more comfortable and much more strong in their daily activities.

Muscle Growth
The companion report in the Journal of Gerontology took a closer look at changes in the size of
the cells among both women and men who trained.The cells in the exercisers grew by 30 per-
cent, the study said. That's similar to what's found in men in their 20s who weight train.

The research is in line with other studies on resistance exercise, and the gains can be especially
dramatic among people who have done no previous exercise, he said.

Get Moving!
The idea that older people must resign themselves to inactivity and frailty is old-fashioned and
outdated. Although age does mandate limits on how much strength an exerciser can gain,
researchers increasingly are unsure what the limit might be.

The only limit, according to much research, is only in the minds of the exercisers. Even in veteran
athletes, gains through more intensive training are very possible.

The best part, as mentioned previously, is that for previously sedentary seniors, the gains can be dramatic!

Can you rise to the challenge?
Spirit. Steel. Strength.
Stated simply, the goal of
this exclusive eColumn is
to focus on getting
stronger through very
simple principles:
Spirit—what you are on
the inside is infinitely
more important than
what you are on the
outside.
Steel—every Seasoned
Senior™ should include
a fitness system of
weights and resistance
training.
Strength—getting
stronger should always
include a balance of
aerobics, stretching and
a strength-maximizing
diet.
GREAT NEWS FOR SEASONED SENIORS
    ...Studies Show Older Exercisers Have Youthful Potential

If the idea of getting more involved with fitness and training leaves you thinking, "But what's the use? I can't
really do all that much, especially in comparison to what I did when I was 18. I certainly can't expect great
results."

Think again!

More and more research shows that older exercisers have youthful potential to gain strength and endurance,
if they work hard at it.
MyBestYears.com
NOTE:
Strength-building and
physical fitness can
make your life better in
so many ways. It's never
too late to make the
decision
to become more active.
However, it is always
advisable to check with
your physician/health
practitioner before making
lifestyle changes.
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MyBestYears.com NOTE: Strength-building and physical fitness can make your life better in so many ways.
It's never too late to make the decision to become more active. However, it is always advisable to check with
your physician/health practitioner before making lifestyle changes.