Tag Archives: lifting
The ravages of time effect us all, it’s something none of us can deny.
Eventually the days of working all the hours under the sun followed by a hard night of partying and then getting up at the crack of dawn and crushing a workout can only last so long.
In the end the body says “Nope, just no.”
So why does this happen?
Let’s look at what we know:
– Hormonal profiles are less optimal
– Your ability to recover declines as you age
– Sleep becomes paramount
– Tolerance to alcohol, highly processed foods declines
– You can actually train harder as you age due to better and more mature/developed neurological connections that create more in-road each session (plus you might have made strength gains from your early days, hopefully)
– Basically you’re no spring chicken anymore
Some people think raging is a bad thing, it’s not, it’s simply a process of life however if you plan your training correctly you can make plenty of progress in your later years, and for some people even make the best progress they’ve ever made.
Personally I’ve had clients who go on to outdo themselves ten-fold from their youth because as an adult they possess the following quality that only come with time:
– Common sense
A typical younger version of yourself might train 5-6 days per week and hit a combination of weights/cardio, not a bad thing, however from experience the attitude of most is that of this “I’m maintaining what I’ve got.” whereas as you age the attitude becomes “I’m looking to become stronger and improve what I have to prevent further decline.” – obviously note true for everyone, just most people.
As youths we truly are ignorant and take what we have for granted. If we had known that the foundations we lay in the early years will serve use to help keep our youth for longer more people would put in a conscious effort to train for strength/progress rather than just aesthetics and maintaining what we have.
^^ Always train for strength, performance and progress, that’s the bottom line. If you do aesthetics will come regardless of age.
Below is a winning formula I have used for people over the age of 40 who have become more invested mentally in their training.
– Train 2-4 times per week (more isn’t necessary)
– Focus on strengthening your posterior chain
– Focus on stretching your anterior chain
– 2-6 movements per session is great
– Conditioning is important (use 1 session to hit CV 80%+ HRR)
– Lower reps with more sets trumps all
– Average intensity will be around 80% 1RM
– 2-3 weeks of hard training followed by 1 week easy is king
– Take 4 total rest weeks of a year (12 week mesocycles)
– Food is fuel, eat mostly whole foods
– Enjoy life, if you want to eat loose do it, just don’t go nuts to often
If you’re new to lifting I advise you hire a coach to help you with the below. Kettlebells are a great tool, however they require practice so leave your ego at the door, focus on longevity.
You’ll improve strength/conditioning/mobility/flexibility with kettlebells, they’re the perfect tool as we find ourselves hitting the later years. If you have never used them I suggest hiring a coach to help teach you their ways.
You might think that for people who work and write about fitness, training, lifestyle change or anything of a similar ilk that they’ve got it all sorted, they never fall to the traps of ego or pride and everything is as it should be.
I’m here today to tell you that if you assume that, you’ll most certainly make an ass out of you and me.
This morning I personally fell to my own hubris.
There was a lift I assumed would be hit and there would be no issues, it can safely be said that that was the mother of all mistakes because the lift was missed three times do to poor tricep strength in the lock out portion of the lift.
Anger ensued, disappointment was rife, clarity was gained, a lesson was learned.
Don’t assume anything until it has been done.
The next time you find yourself struggling and look to others and start thinking “They’ve got it so easy.” or anything similar, remember that chances are they have failed int he same way you have, they’ve learnt lessons you have yet to know even exist and made progress, it just took time.
Correcting form can be tricky at the best of times with a good coach at your side. This becomes even harder when you train alone, but fear not, I will share with you two quick tips to help you improve your own form and iron out any kinks.
Be truthful in your critique of yourself, trust me, it will be a to your advantage to let your ego take a nock on this occasion.
1 – Video Feedback
It’s fair to imagine hat most people have some form of camera or recording device on their phone, meaning that there is always an opportunity to check form and improve.
Heres how to do it yourself –
– Record your lift
– Upload it to your computer
– Go to the interweb and load up YouTube
– Find a high level athlete of similar build/stature to put yours again
– Compare & make notes, assess what YOU can do to improve
– Take heed of your notes and go practice
2 – Slow Down
The use of cadence in lifting is a great way to hone your skill/form. Try doing a 6-1-6-1 tempo (eccentric, pause, concentric, pause) for around 6 reps, start off with say a load of 60% 1RM, if you don’t know yours then work to an RPE of 6/7.
The slower form will force you to adhere together form to keep not only control but also balance. You can also use this technique to really focus on contracting/squeezing the muscles you’re using for maximal pump/MU recruitment.
Form is paramount in not only lifting big weights but also longevity in lifting, never sacrifice it in the gym. Ego is something that needs to be left outside the gym.