Be Beautiful at all (Healthy) Costs

Resistance Training Effectively Trims Ab Flab in Women

There’s no doubt about it – resistance training is a great way for both men and women to increase strength, reduce overall body fat and, especially in the case of older adults, improve their ability to perform everyday tasks.

But elderly women may have a slight advantage when it comes to trimming their waistlines.

A new study suggests that women who follow a basic resistance-training program can expect to lose more fat from their midsections than their male workout partners.

Dr. Gary R. Hunter of the University of Alabama at Birmingham and colleagues placed 26 men and women, aged 61 to 77 years, on a three-times-per-week resistance-training program.

After 25 weeks, both men and women improved their strength by an average of 15 percent and 16 percent, respectively, and lost about 4.4 pounds of total body fat.

But while the men didn’t appear to lose any fat from their midsections, the women lost about 15 cubic centimeters of abdominal fat, even though both groups lost equal amounts of overall body fat.

Hunter and colleagues are quick to caution older men from being discouraged by these findings, and suggest adding aerobic exercise to a resistance-training program to spur abdominal fat loss.

Source: Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 2002; 24, 1023-1028

This appeared in ACE FitnessMatters (www.acefitness.org)