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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

Two years ago, Shirley Webb of East Alton, Illinois, couldn't get up off the floor without help. Earlier this year, the 78-year old deadlifted a 225-pound barbell with ease. The record-setting senior weightlifter sets a great example of how everyday seniors can improve their mobility, feel better, and have fun with exercise. Here's how Webb got started and kept going with free-weight training, and what we can learn from her.

Find a workout buddy

Webb said she decided to join her gym after going along to keep her 20-year old granddaughter company. Fitness experts say having a workout buddy and a workout group is a great way to stay motivated, pursue your goals, and have more fun while you exercise.

Choose a senior-friendly gym

Webb told ESPN she wasn't intimidated at all by her first visit to the gym. The fact that the staff took the time to explain all the equipment to her and her granddaughter cemented her decision to sign up, she said. You're more likely to go work out if you look forward to being at the gym, so choose a place that makes you feel welcome. There are more than 36,000 gyms in the US, so unless you live in a very rural area you probably have more than one choice nearby. Visit a few before you sign a contract.

Work with a patient and attentive trainer

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The 30-Second Review

The best weight loss program for you is the one you'll stick with for the long haul. We cut through the diet fads, consulted with top nutritional experts to find out what really matters, and taste-tested the best plans to determine which program offers the most sustainable, achievable pathway to healthy food habits.

Best Overall

Weight Watchers

A fun, accessible points system incentivizes healthy food choices, and plans starting at $20/month can accommodate almost any budget.

Best for People Who Hate to Cook

Nutrisystem

If you want to lose weight on autopilot, $295 of hit-or-miss meals delivered to your door will (almost) get you through the month.

Best for Self-Starters

Mayo Clinic Diet

Disciplined dieters who can handle an intense two-week kickstart can get great results from this plan's $11 book and website support.

Best Free Option

SparkPeople

SparkPeople's free website offers a lot of weight loss tools, but its one-size-fits-all plan may not work for everyone.

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Nutritionists agree that if you're looking to permanently reduce pounds, your weight loss program has to be sustainable, offer realistic goals, and (gasp!) be enjoyable enough to incorporate into your lifestyle for good. That's right: Weight loss programs are most successful when they help you break unhealthy patterns to become your new way of life — not just help you lose weight.

Read more: The Best Weight Loss Program

You enter a room, stare in confusion, and ask yourself, "What did I come here for again?" Forgetfulness can spring from a variety of different factors, including stress, lack of rest and sleep, genetics, an inactive lifestyle (both physically and/or mentally), and environmental factors.

Diet, however, is no exception. There is a strong link between a healthy, nutritious, whole food-based diet and a decreased risk of memory loss and cognitive decline. Learn about 6 types of foods worth introducing into your regular diet to improve memory preservation.

Think it's too late? True, when it comes to protecting brain health through diet, the earlier the better. However, these evidence-based tips can even help those who are already experiencing memory or other cognitive problems. In fact, the results of a recent clinical trial demonstrate that proper nutrition, together with exercise, social activity, and cognitive training, improved brain performance in older adults aged 60 to 77. 1 In other words, it's never too late!

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Pregnancy is a time when your body goes through a lot of changes. That is why yoga is the perfect activity for expectant mothers. Stretching and strengthening your body will help prepare it for childbirth while learning to calm your mind will help keep you sane during pregnancy and labor. Read on to learn more about how yoga can help get you through your pregnancy.

Benefits of Prenatal Yoga

First and arguably most importantly, yoga teaches you how to focus on and control your breath. By learning how to breathe and relax, women can have a more comfortable labor process. These techniques can also be utilized during pregnancy when pain, anxiety, or discomfort becomes overwhelming.

Practicing yoga can help relieve many of the aches and pains related to pregnancy including lower back pain, headaches, and carpal tunnel symptoms. It is also proven to reduce stress, decrease nausea, and improve sleep quality. Prenatal yoga helps strengthen and lengthen muscles women use for childbirth (like hips, pelvic floor, and abdominals) to make labor easier.

What Happens in a Prenatal Yoga Class?

Breathing is an important part of prenatal yoga classes. You will learn to breathe deeply to control shortness of breath and to help combat labor pains. As you breathe, you will also be prompted to check in with your body's sensations, which is especially important for a healthy pregnancy.

The more active part of prenatal yoga involves gentle stretching and yoga poses. You will stretch different body parts and hold poses designed to strengthen your body. Each position will develop your flexibility and strength without hurting you or baby.

Why Should I Attend A Prenatal Yoga Class?

Taking time to focus on yourself and your growing baby is an important part of pregnancy. Doing prenatal yoga will allow you to take time out of your hectic life to focus on how your body feels and on feeling baby inside you. You will become more aware of baby and can think deeply about him or her, leading to feelings of bonding even before birth.

Prenatal yoga classes are also a fun way to meet other moms-to-be. You can meet new friends with the same healthy mindset you have and form a support group of sorts. Sharing pregnancy experiences and anxieties with like-minded ladies will help you feel supported in ways other family or friends might not be able to provide.

'Jenny Holt, Freelance Writer'

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