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In one of our previous articles, we defined strength and functional training and how they can help you build up a body that is ready for any physical challenge you are facing. Here, we are focusing on the specific health benefits of strength training. So, let’s look at four of the most common ones that we have found in our literature review.


The ’90s and ‘00s were the inflexion point at which people started to adopt a wellbeing culture. And more specifically, among the non-professional athletes, the inclusion of fitness training in their lives. At that time, aerobic activity was the go-to choice if somebody wanted to start a weight loss plan. But now, we know that 30-40 minutes of intense strength training can burn more calories than 2 hours of moderate cycling. Furthermore, strength training helps you boost your metabolism with its effect lasting up to 72h depending on the workout [1].


Most people exercise with the “conscious” goal of becoming fitter, faster or leaner, but “unconsciously” we are also driven by our feelings. This means that we also exercise to change how we feel. When you start doing strength training regularly, you are likely to experience a change in your mood and mental health. For example, you may notice how you start feeling powerful, as you have done things that you thought you couldn’t. This could be lifting a certain weight a number of times or running faster than the previous month. Because of those feelings, and because of the hormonal waterfall we experience when you do physical activity, you are more likely to leave the session in a better mood [3]. To add more, a study published in 2018 showed that those who practice strength training have fewer symptoms of depression [4].


When we always practise the same sport, we normally recruit the activation of some muscle groups way more than others. Agonist muscles are responsible for doing the main action of a certain movement and antagonist muscles try to inhibit or reduce it. Normally, this leads to an unbalanced ratio of strength between agonist and antagonist and we could work on that using specific strengthening training. In addition, we are going to increase the load that our tissue can endure. Therefore, they will need much more time, intensity or resistance in order to fail or get injured. 

Let’s put the runner’s example: Some running injuries are associated with imbalances in the relative strengths of different muscles. Thus, strengthening work will help you rebalance those muscles and joints reducing the likelihood of getting injured. Plus, the gained strength in muscles and joints will help you last longer and work harder. Therefore,  runners that include strength training in their weekly routine are set to experience improved form and running economy [5].


There are quite a few studies that link strength training with increased quality of life in terms of perceived mental and physical well-being [6]. This is especially true as people age, thus strength training is a good partner to keep us active and in good general health throughout our life [7]. 

So you can imagine that strength training can help you live longer when you do it properly. BUT hey, what does “doing it properly” mean? It means, the right intensity, progressively increasing your load as your body adapts. And include sufficient rest, which means that you allow enough time for your body to recover and adapt  [3]. To end this topic, you may already know that this type of training reduces the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure or cardiovascular diseases [9]. As a matter of fact, there are studies that show more effectiveness of strength training than cardio to reduce the risk of age-related chronic diseases [8].


We have highlighted some of the most common benefits that have shown up in our literature review. There is no doubt that whatever your fitness goal is, adding strength training to your workout repertoire is a must. Whether you want to level up your fitness, increase your running pace or just get started with fitness. 

And if you go for that, please remember that strength training needs to be done in the correct form. You need to include recovery time and progressively increase the intensity of your workouts. When in doubt seek a qualified fitness professional, so they can help you land the perfect form, progressive intensity and rest.
At Tanktoppers we take this seriously. Our instructors provide regular feedback, adapt the intensity to your progress and recommend the required rest time to avoid injuries. Strength training is at the core of our workout philosophy and if you have any questions/comments, please give us a shout following this link, we will be happy to help.

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[1] The effect of exercise interventions on resting metabolic rate: A systematic review and meta-analysis

[2] Examining Variations of Resting Metabolic Rate of Adults: A Public Health Perspective

[3] 8 Benefits of Strength Training That’ll Convince You To Try It, women’s health

[4] Association of Efficacy of Resistance Exercise Training With Depressive Symptoms  

[5] Strength Training. Marathon Training Academy

[6] Effects of a 9-month resistance training intervention on quality of life, sense of coherence, and depressive symptoms in older adults: a randomized controlled trial

[7] The effect of resistance training on health-related quality of life in older adults: Systematic review and meta-analysis

[8] Resistance Exercise Training as a Primary Countermeasure to Age-Related Chronic Disease