The two hapless weightlifters Hans and Franz (played by Dana Carvey abd Kevin Nealon) got Arnold Schwarzenegger to flex his pecs in an episode of their 1991 "Saturday Night Live" routine.
And though their dubious advice to a class of 7-year-olds was to oil your body, shave your pecs, and strike a pose, their real intention was to "pump ... you up."
New research in the American Journal of Epidemiology looked at data on over 80,306 adults and confirms that strength training is as important as aerobic exercise. And it can make you feel a lot younger.
The University of Sydney researchers found that doing regular muscle-building workouts (no gym or weights required) was associated with a 23 percent reduction in risk of premature death from any cause, and a 31 percent reduction in cancer-related deaths.
Push-ups and other exercises that use your own body weight as resistance or using stretch bands or weights is equally effective.
The researchers also found that together, a routine of aerobics and strength building delivered the best boost to your health.
In the study, that meant 150 minutes of aerobics and two days of strength training every week. Our favorite aerobic/strength-building routine involves:
• Walking 10,000 steps a day or the equivalent.
• Doing 7-10 minutes of strength training of your foundation muscles (abs, back, buttocks, quadriceps, hamstring, and rotators) every other day.
• Doing 8-10 minutes of strength training of your non-foundation muscles (chest, shoulder, biceps, triceps, and forearms) every other day.
• Doing 20 jumps to build hip and spine bones, every day.
That will pump you up.
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