Strength Training Enough for Bones, Not Adrenal Fatigue

If you are a midlife woman I’m going to share some success stories here I think that you will love. With each, I’m going to share a research study linking to why and what happened. These successes are no accidents.

I also want you to know that these women before they started strength training, weren’t. Obvious, right? But we forget it. We think, well that’s because they’ve always done it. 

We all start from a place of not doing it and move to doing it.

Some of them were doing too much and came to realize that finding their sweet spot was the key to easier results.

Others had to change their focus from tons of endurance to one of more muscle so that less fat could also be a truth. 

Somewhere here, whether you need a shift in your program, you want reinforcement you’re on the right path, or you want to get started but are still on the fence wondering if now is the time… there’s something for you here. 

00:00

Diane changed her bone density by strength training at home

during the pandemic from January to September of 2020. 

03:45

“For this type of exercise to be effective a joint reaction force superior to common daily activity with sensitive muscle strengthening must be determined.” 

Whole Plate Vibration – effect for deteriorating elderly, but only effective at gains when combined with strength training component. 

“However the combination of exercise should be tailored on the patient’s clinical features. No agreement exists on the best protocol in terms of duration, frequency, and the type of exercises to be combined.”

The exercise types most effective on BMD for the neck of femur, which should be considered in clinical practice, appear to be the progressive resistance strength training for the lower limbs. The most effective intervention for BMD at the spine has been suggested to be the multicomponent training exercise programme. 

Strength training enough for muscle strength may still not be enough for bone density. 

Jennifer lost 100 lbs and she hit that threshold during the pandemic 

combining  lifting weights at home with her regular walking and cardiovascular training. 

07:25 Jennifer followed a training program consisting of two high intensity(heavy) strength training sessions a week, one functional movement session, and two interval training sessions along with daily movement in the form of walking, golf, hiking, biking, or swimming. 

For post-menopausal women, HIIT compared to endurance exercise training is much more effective at removing adipose tissue and visceral belly fat. 

Weight training even with minimal exercises is proven to predict weight control in post menopausal women. Weight loss comes from increasing lean muscle creating metabolic changes adequate enough to promote energy but under the threshold where rest or couch compensation occurs. Jennifer likes to work hard. 

INsulin sensitivity is another reason post menopausal women want to exercise. In a pre-diabetic state, midlife women often need the boost of muscle to support blood sugar control. Even T1 Diabetics find more opportune exercise in strength training compared to aerobic exercise. (3) 

Jeanie says she was doing too much too often,

or caught wondering if she had time to do it today, and not stretching or knowing the importance of it. 

10:36 In spite of this, it’s important to note that I’m asked frequently about women in perimenopause should do Flipping 50, or women in post menopause (in their 60s and 70s) should do the same as Flipping 50. The before (peri), mid, and post menopause workouts are indeed similar. 

One study recently hypothesized that post menopause women would have more muscle damage due to lower hormone levels or what they called “hormone deprivation.” It was disproven. Heavy weight training positive outcomes without negative repercussions were experienced by both peri and post menopausal women.

Now, consider that study done in 2021, but… on women not on HRT. The difference I would hypothesize and have seen it myself and in our community is that those women on HRT have an easier time gaining lean muscle and losing fat. Or avoiding muscle loss and fat gains, depending on their status. 

Kathy mentioned gratitude for the safe form and demonstrations

of it that helped her. Beyond that it was the community that gave her such a boost in realizing that she could exercise even when hosting house guests since another person in her Facebook group had followed my suggestion that the way we deal with the holidays can be different.

13:44 There is some evidence that women are more prone to injury compared to men, and older women more at risk than younger. But there is not a lot of data on this. The injuries to tend to occur in overuse syndrome more than they don’t, and in the application of endurance exercise. This makes sense, as the repetitive injury strain causes break down over time. And a singular sport activity like running or even too much walking creates muscle imbalances eventually. 

This 40 year fitness professional is a prime example of this.

It wasn’t when I was doing marathons and teaching classes frequently but when I became a triathlete with a much more balanced use of my body that I truly became fit. 

Those of us who have an addictive personality though, and we are all vulnerable to addition. Feeling good feels good and we tend to want more. (greedy!) and even that can go too far. 

Emily says she always thought weights would end up being monotonous

but that the program kept it interesting and different each time. She also appreciated that knowing only having to do it twice a week is good. 

17:45 Women’s perceptions of strength training is changing, but slowly. Interestingly enough, the older we are the more committed we get. Barriers include being too busy, lack of desire, and too much discipline required to continuously take part in a regular resistance training program, even for young college women. 

The biggest barriers weren’t gaining bulk, or size. Still some of those feelings linger for women over 50 who grew up with those myths – and with a high carb diet that most likely contributed to any “bulk” experienced.

Hana said this in the middle of the Stronger program: definitely stronger, happier, better sleep, more muscle and don’t even care about the scale. Hard to believe she said, but true.    

19:35 The struggle to weigh and put your measure of success on the scale is real. Giving that up, letting it go is empowering. Knowing what you gain or lose can be important. Did you lose muscle ? or fat? Did you gain? Muscle? 

Scale Shopping??

My scale recommendations so you can monitor. Infrequently.

Susan finished STRONGER Tone & Define definitely seeing more muscle definition.

She lost 2 inches from her belly and 1 inch from her hips. Clothes fit better. After shoulder and back injuries last year she managed to recover and use this program to get back into weights. 

So fantastic! The goal to keep in mind, is strength training enough to create results and never so much that other activity is compromised. 

Allyson was pleased with the program and her progress.

She had definition in her triceps which she never had before. 

Joanna noted she actually did the exercises for 12 weeks

which never happened in the gym. She said it was much better for her than at gym with leeway for time. 

Convenience of exercise is big. The resistance to strength training is often multifactorial: 

  • Inconvenient
  • Time
  • Uncomfortable in a gym 

The reasons given by all-ages of women for exercise at home:

  • Don’t want to be seen exercising 
  • Don’t want to commute
  • Not in the mood
  • Tired, too much fatigue 
  • Sore, achy or don’t want to be

This is really a big part of the reason behind the frequency of programming and encouragement toward movement outside of exercise. It allows freedom, complete recovery, and reduction of injury or soreness. 

One of our former students, Tamara, said this, “the STRONGER program impacted my life.

The lessons you learn on lifting weight allows you to feel comfortable walking into any gym. This program was one of the best things I could have done for myself. 

Even when women begin a program to mitigate menopause symptoms – bone or muscle loss, belly fat or weight gains – they stay, if they can stay beyond a sticking point, because it becomes enjoyable and empowering according to a recent study in BMC Women’s Health. 

And I didn’t need research to tell me this. I see it daily. Comments like, I started for weight loss, but I got my life back, are a frequent occurrence here at Flipping 50. 

Terry said she had started gaining weight

and when she tried what always worked, it didn’t. She gained more weight, about 16 lbs. She felt weaker, tired, anxious and was having hot flashes. She found me on YouTube and was trying to piece together an exercise program.

She learned about cortisol, core exercises, why situps are not good for the back, so when she got the info about STRONGER, she was ready to find out what else she didn’t know. She realized she can eat a variety of food and still lose inches = amazing? She’s getting more energy. She also did the companion Food Flip program and said she thinks everyone should – within 2 days of starting it her hot flashes! 

27:54 If you’re on the fence… I hope that these comments and the research behind them have helped you. I hope you understand the why, that they’re no accidents. The programs are designed to support your physical and your emotional changes during midlife and later. 

And if not this program, something. If you’re unsure, you need to talk to a real human, DM me on Instagram. I don’t check FB messenger often so that is not a good place. But I see and respond to all DMs on Instagram if you message at @flipping50tv   (be sure it’s got the tv on it) 

I have three questions for you: 

  • Are you strength training enough to positively impact your bone & muscle? 
  • Could you be strength training too much so it negatively impacts your adrenals and fat? 
  • Have you considered STRONGER Tone & Define to get started on a made-for-menopause path? 

REFERENCES:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6323511/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29088015/

 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34444464/

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr4902a3.htm

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5955292/

https://www.heart.org/en/news/2019/01/02/the-pros-and-cons-of-weighing-yourself-every-day

https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0264158

https://bmcwomenshealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12905-022-01900-0

 

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