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Whether you're in your early 20s or your late 80s, following a regular weightlifting schedule can be beneficial to your overall wellbeing. In your younger years, a vigorous strength training workout can promote lifelong health, while older adults can maintain muscle strength and integrity by keeping up with a gentle weightlifting regimen. Although your exercise routine may change as you age, regular strength training through the years can help you to live a longer, healthier and happier life.

Why Should I Be Following a Weightlifting Regimen?

If you aren't already following a regular strength training routine, it's never too late to start. Lifting weights each week offers a number of physiological and psychological benefits at every age, helping you to:

• Lose weight and tone your muscles

Lower levels of LDL, the "bad" cholesterol, while increasing levels of HDL, or the "good" cholesterol

• Promote healthy bone development

• Enhance cardiovascular health and reduce your blood pressure

• Boost cognitive functioning

• Improve your flexibility and mobility

• Look better and feel more confident

• Improve your mood and decrease anxiety

Read more: Don’t Let Age Get in the Way of Your Weightlifting Routine

Living with any type of cancer is challenging in so many ways. Mesothelioma is a particularly difficult type of cancer. It causes symptoms like chest pains, breathlessness, coughing, and difficulty breathing. Side effects of treatment can cause fatigue, weight gain, and nausea. Getting exercise may be the last thing on your mind if you are struggling with mesothelioma, but the truth is that it can make you feel better. There are several ways in which exercise—doctor approved, of course—can benefit you as a mesothelioma patient.

Battle Fatigue with Exercise

The cancer itself may leave you feeling tired, but more often treatments, especially chemotherapy can leave a mesothelioma patient feeling bone weary. The fatigue you may experience is something that does not get better with more rest, and it certainly will not motivate you to exercise. However, exercise is exactly what can put a dent in this kind of fatigue. Exercise has been shown to actually increase energy and reduce fatigue.

Reduce the Stress of Being Sick

Being sick is stressful, but being sick with terminal cancer can cause stress to skyrocket. Exercise has long been known to be a useful way to mitigate stress. Exercise helps to refocus the mind, take your thoughts away from your illness, and help you feel more positive about life in general. Simply being more fit, feeling better in your own body, will help you feel happier and less stressed.

Fight Anxiety and Depression

It is not unusual for the stress of being sick with mesothelioma to take deeper root and evolve into more serious mental health symptoms of anxiety and depression. Living with this condition is not easy and many people find themselves feeling anxious and depressed. Exercise has been proven to be able to reduce the symptoms of these mental health conditions and to help people feel happier.

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Weight loss is a symptom of mesothelioma and treatments can also worsen this side effect by causing a decrease in appetite. Exercise is an excellent way to stimulate appetite. Along with a healthy diet, exercise can help you put pounds back on or maintain a healthy weight.

In addition to all these benefits of exercise, getting in some physical activity will improve your overall health. It will strengthen your muscles, improve cardiovascular fitness, and generally help your body function better. Being fitter means that your body may respond better to treatments and will suffer fewer or reduced side effects.

Exercise is a powerful weapon against many illnesses. It may not be a cure, but it can make the difference between feeling rotten and feeling better. It is important to go slow with exercise when you are sick and to engage in an exercise routine that is developed by a professional and in conjunction with your medical team, but getting started is so important to feeling better than you thought was possible while being sick.

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Sometimes working out just isn't in the cards. Maybe you've been sick or have an injury. Or maybe your schedule is totally unforgiving and you're overloaded with work and sports.

It happens to everyone. You'd be hard pressed to find a person who has never taken some time off from training. For a few weeks, a break from exercise is not all that problematic. But de-training issues begin to arise if you extend it for too long.

Here's how skipping workouts affects your body for the first four weeks, and for the time thereafter.

In the first four weeks . . .

Your conditioning decreases

You can quickly improve your conditioning. At the same time, your endurance is one of the first things to go after you stop working out. "You see some high level CrossFit guys who can get in great conditioning shape in a couple of weeks," says Dr. John Rusin, a strength coach specializing in sports performance physical therapy and rehab. "You can get linearly better and linearly worse by not doing your specific energy systems work."

Read more: This Is What Happens to Your Bod When You Stop Working Out

How It Works

Pliés, relevés, and sauté jumps don't just look graceful, the ballet moves also lengthen and strengthen muscles and burn calories.

Ballet-inspired classes like Pure Barre, Bar Method, and Balletone are a popular workout trend that incorporates moves from ballet, Pilates, and yoga to upbeat music.

Many gyms offer ballet-inspired fitness classes, and barre studios offer classes for overall conditioning as well as targeted workouts for abs, thighs, or glutes. There are even "barre light" classes for beginners.

You don't need a tutu or ballet slippers. Instead, dress in comfortable workout clothes and show up to the 60-minute classes prepared to use the ballet barre to do the movements your teacher shows you.

Some classes also use small balls, resistance bands, and hand weights to do floor work. The low-impact workout focuses on proper alignment.

Read more: Barre Classes: Benefits, Exercises, and What to Expect

Sometimes working out just isn't in the cards. Maybe you've been sick or have an injury. Or maybe your schedule is totally unforgiving and you're overloaded with work and sports.

It happens to everyone. You'd be hard pressed to find a person who has never taken some time off from training. For a few weeks, a break from exercise is not all that problematic. But de-training issues begin to arise if you extend it for too long.

Here's how skipping workouts affects your body for the first four weeks, and for the time thereafter.

In the first four weeks . . .

Your conditioning decreases

You can quickly improve your conditioning. At the same time, your endurance is one of the first things to go after you stop working out. "You see some high level CrossFit guys who can get in great conditioning shape in a couple of weeks," says Dr. John Rusin, a strength coach specializing in sports performance physical therapy and rehab. "You can get linearly better and linearly worse by not doing your specific energy systems work."

Your body becomes less efficient compared to when you were training. The amount of oxygen your body can use to make energy is reduced, as is the quantity of blood in your body. This contributes to decreased aerobic endurance of up to 24 percent. Also, lactate builds up at lower intensities, so it's impossible to exercise at the same intensity as before.

When all's said and done, you will fatigue at a much faster rate and won't be able

Read more: This Is What Happens to Your Body When You Stop Working Out

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