Women Over 40: Listen Up

by Suzanne Andrews

Six Unexpected Reasons Why You Should Strengthen Your Abs!

We all know that flat abs are attractive, but there are even more important (and surprising) reasons you need to blast belly fat and strengthen your core…

  1. To play sports and other awesome activities. With a strong core, you can be flexible and ready to take on activities such as putting the grandkids in and out of the car, (and to keep up with them!) Tennis anyone? You need a strong core so you don’t hurt yourself when you swing the racket. The same goes for golf. What about activities that involve balance? A strong core gives you better balance.
  1. To tackle housework. If you don’t have a magic genie to do the housework then you have to have a strong core to be able to make home repairs, to carry stuff, mop, vacuum and to make the many household chores and activities easier.
  1. To ward off a heart attack. A weak core is usually accompanied by belly fat. You need a strong core because belly fat puts you at high risk of having a heart attack. In a study of over 5,000 participants, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute found that the risk of heart failure was 34 percent higher for overweight individuals and 104 percent higher for people classified as "obese."
  1. To have good posture. You’re not getting any younger and poor posture will only make you look older and tired. Improve your posture by strengthening your abs and you will literally slash off years from your looks.
  1. To develop a healthy back. Back pains are often caused by weak abs. Since most back pain can be successfully treated with therapeutic exercises, when back pain strikes, rehab therapists, including myself, recommend a string of core-strengthening exercises. A study by researchers at Duke University suggests that not exercising is an especially effective way to put on belly fat. The study, published in the Journal of Applied Physiology, found that just eight months of inactivity increased visceral fat -- the potentially dangerous layer of belly fat -- by about 9 percent. On the bright side, people who exercised vigorously for eight months actually reduced their visceral fat by about 8 percent. You can get an amazingly strong core with chair exercises or standing exercises instead of engaging in floor crunches that can hurt your neck. 
  1. To enjoy good sex. When you get older it makes it tougher to enjoy sex and a strong core is your powerhouse and will help you enjoy better sex!

Start training now and live your life the way it was intended – a functional life filled with energy and abundant health.

Suzanne Andrews founded Functional Fitness in 2008, the most popular fitness series for boomers and seniors broadcasting on over 159 Public Television stations throughout the US and Canada.

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