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If you’ve steered clear of the weight room in the past, now is the time to get familiar with strength training. Having strong muscles can help prevent injury and help you move better in day-to-day life, whether you’re lifting a box or climbing stairs. Strength training also improves your bone density, which is important to prevent fractures and osteoporosis. It also prevents against age-related muscle loss — the natural decrease in muscle mass that happens as you age — which keeps your metabolism going strong. And although you probably associate cardiovascular exercise with heart-health benefits, research shows that strength training also helps keep your heart healthy by lowering your blood pressure and improving cholesterol levels.

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