Strength training builds more than muscles

I came across this article on the Harvard Medical School website. It is always a good reminder. As we age we lose more than muscle mass!

Most of us know that strength training (with free weights, weight machines, or resistance bands) can help build and maintain muscle mass and strength. What many of us don’t know is that strong muscles lead to strong bones. And strong bones can help minimize the risk of fracture due to osteoporosis.

A combination of age-related changes, inactivity, and inadequate nutrition conspire to gradually steal bone mass, at the rate of 1% per year after age 40. As bones grow more fragile and susceptible to fracture, they are more likely to break after even a minor fall or a far less obvious stress, such as bending over to tie a shoelace.

Osteoporosis should be a concern for all of us. An estimated eight million women and two million men in the United States have osteoporosis. It is now responsible for more than two million fractures each year, and experts expect that number will rise. Hip fractures are usually the most serious. Six out of 10 people who break a hip never fully regain their former level of independence. Even walking across a room without help may become impossible.

Numerous studies have shown that strength training can play a role in slowing bone loss, and several show it can even build bone. This is tremendously useful to help offset age-related declines in bone mass. Activities that put stress on bones can nudge bone-forming cells into action. That stress comes from the tugging and pushing on bone that occur during strength training (as well as weight-bearing aerobic exercises like walking or running). The result is stronger, denser bones.

And strength training, in particular, has bone benefits beyond those offered by aerobic weight-bearing exercise. It targets bones of the hips, spine, and wrists, which are the sites most likely to fracture. What’s more, resistance workouts — particularly those that include moves emphasizing power and balance — enhance strength and stability. That can boost confidence, encourage you to stay active, and reduce fractures another way — by cutting down on falls.



Strength and Power Training for Older Adults – December Meeting Reminder

Our December meeting will be at 1:30 PM at the Wellness Center on December 11th.

Our subject area expert will be Nuri Bonada. Nuri is a rehab graduate and member of our peer group. She is a personal trainer at the wellness center and many of her clients are “older adults”.

At the meeting you will learn;

  1. What strength and power training are and what they can do for you

  2. How aging changes our muscle profile

  3. The many benefits of strength and power training

  4. The specific role of strength and power training in reducing heart disease risk

During the meeting Nuri will lead us through some strength and power training so make sure you are medically cleared to exercise and bring your favorite bands or hand weights.

You will leave the meeting with a personalized action plan for 2020 and tips on staying motivated.

Note: All information presented is courtesy of Harvard Medical School.

Don’t miss this one!


Added sugar: Where is it hiding?

Added sugar is everywhere in the food supply. It’s so ubiquitous that you might find some packaged and processed foods unappetizing without it. The Harvard Medical School has provided a tightly written summary of the major sources of added sugar as well as exploring alternative sweeteners. You can view this article at the link below. This has also been added to the Eating Well section of the Peer Group website.

Added Sugar Sources

Join us for an interactive session on Cardiac Medications – November 13th, 1:30 PM at the Wellness Center

Our November meeting will be all about medications. Our guest subject area expert is Dipesh Patel a Pharmacist with Shoppers Drugmart on Lansdowne. Dipesh also has a special designation in the treatment of Diabetes so let’s take advantage of this opportunity to gain some insights into the management of diabetes.


Bring a list of your medications with you. Let’s share stories about our experiences with medications and get some discussion going. We will also talk about other ways of achieving similar outcomes that we expect from our medications.

Diabetes Medication Survey


Our guest pharmacist for the November meeting has expertise in all of the usual heart health medications we may be using but he is also a specialist in diabetes treatment and medications. There are a large number of medications used to treat diabetes so we want to narrow the discussion to the ones being used by our peer group. Below you will find  a link to a confidential survey.

If you have a prescription for diabetes medication please complete this survey before November 8th!

Here is the link

Diabetes Medication Survey


HEART TO HEART Community Talk

Kristen Doucette will be moderating an expert panel on heart health matters. Here is a great opportunity to ask those really tough questions to the panel of experts. The event is in Hastings at the Field House. Here is a link to the directions to get there. It is only 30 minutes. Let me know if you can make it and I will register you.

Directions to the Field House

If you can make it out to this event I know Kristen would love to see you. Bring your friends who may have an interest in the topic of Heart Health. See the details below.

Heart To Heart


October 9th – 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm

Rooms A and B – The Sport and Wellness Center

Join Exercise Therapist Stephanie Gibson from the Regional Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program for an informative session. Learn how vascular disease develops, the risk factors and how exercise can help prevent and/or manage cardiovascular disease.

At the end of the meeting we will review the results of the On Track survey. If you have not completed it use the link below.

Am I On Track?