People of every age can benefit from exercise, even seniors. No matter what your age, you can maintain a healthy body weight, add lean muscle tissue and stay, or get, healthy. General guidelines may change based on your fitness level, but any resistance exercises such as pullups, chinups and dips should be done two or three times each week.
Your body weight is just one form of resistance. You use it for pullups, chinups and dips instead of traditional weights. For seniors, the American College of Sports Medicine recommends muscle-strengthening activities at least two days per week on nonconsecutive days. You can add a third day for increased results if you desire. Perform one or two sets of 10 to 15 repetitions. Perform each exercise in a slow, controlled manner without using momentum.
Why Not Every Day?
Rest is an essential part of an exercise program. On rest days your body heals and becomes stronger, leaner and more fit. When you perform resistance exercises such as pullups, chinups and dips, there are microscopic tears created in your muscle tissue. If you were to train these exercises every day, your body would not have a chance to heal. Muscle tissue would be broken down and you would feel weak and increase your chance of injury.
Ouch, My Aching Arms
These three exercises are going to work your back, shoulders, biceps and triceps. You may be sore immediately after your workout, or even a couple days later. This is normal. The soreness you feel right after a workout should clear up quickly, as it's due to muscle fatigue. The next day if you're sore it's your body's way of telling you the workout was tough and it needs time to heal. This delayed-onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, should clear up in about 48 to 72 hours. If the pain gets worse or does not clear up, there's a chance you injured yourself and you should see a doctor.
I Can't Lift My Weight
Exercise machines are great tools to use. They can help you build strength, but also control how much you lift and even help guide your motion. If you can't lift your own body weight for pullups, chinups and dips, use an assisted machine. These have a weight stack that you can adjust like most other machines. But usually whatever you put on the weight stack, you subtract from your own body weight. For example, say you weigh 150 pounds. If you put 50 pounds on the assisted pullup machine you will be exercising with 100 pounds of your own weight. This will help you work on pullups, chinups and dips so you can eventually do them with your own body weight.
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