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Old 07-12-2014, 09:17 PM   #1
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Default Fit and Strong at Fifty and Beyond

So I've taken some time off due to really poor work/life balance and some health issues I need to resolve. However school is over, long family vacation done and life is getting back in order so I am back in business now, just with some new goals more health related than a powerlifting total, although I do want to get some goals there too.

Anyway, I really aggravated my low back on the move to the new house this spring and have been diagnosed with basically arthritis which is no big deal, but it took some time to resolve itself to where I could get back to squatting and benching, interestingly deadlifts didn't bother my low back at all.

My most recent physical revealed a low test number, 251 for those of you that know what that means, and I have been flat out told I need to lose a chunk of weight or face the consequences as I get older. Doc thinks my losing weight will help the testosterone number as well. We'll see on that.

Anyway, I originally got into lifting to get strong and fit so I could still keep up with my kids as I got older, but kind of got sidetracked chasing powerlifting numbers. I think that has been my excuse for over eating and landing myself in my present condition. 217 lbs at 5'7.5" and 49 years old, and fairly strong, much stronger than I was before, but not really any better able to keep up with my kids or even look like I lift, much less look fit and healthy.

So this log will be all about getting back to my original goals of being fit and strong as well as address weight loss intelligently and strengthening my core to resolve my low back issues. I am going to do the McGill Big three as warmup on lower days among other things, but certainly any advice on that will be appreciated.

Any advice will be appreciated. I've been getting back in the swing of things with mainly big compound lifts for fairly high reps 6-10 for a couple sets the past two weeks and truthfully I feel as strong as ever, but I haven't gone very heavy either so who knows.

I have roughed out a plan to train 5 days a week with 3-4 lifts a day. A dynamic move like cleans, a big four lift (squatting twice a week), a complimentary lift, and a strongman type move, then walking or biking for some steady state cardio. I'm not concerned with heavy just yet, just want to get back to moving weights and having fun. Develop the habit again and then moving forward on the intensity maybe. We'll see.

On the nutrition front, I know exactly what I need to be doing, I just need to stay disciplined and avoid the crap foods and drinks I have allowed myself to enjoy too much this past year or so.

Anyway, there you go. I'll be fifty in 6 months, I'd like to have lost the gut by then which should mean I'm back closer to 190 than 200. I am planning on a powerlifting meet in December too just to see where I'm at by then. I still have strength goals to hit, but those are taking a back seat to my health goals for now.

Been lurking a bit recently now that I have time to get on computer again and I see there has been a lot going on with you all, so looking forward to catching up with you guys as well.

Let's do this.
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Best meet lifts: Sq 150 Kg (330 lb), Bench 120 Kg (264), DL 160 (352) @89 Kg (197)
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Old 07-12-2014, 09:54 PM   #2
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Welcome back Mike - I wish you all the success in the World. Even Steve realized that over 40 means health comes first. In my mind, lifting follows health.

My road to ultimate health took 10 years, but I was a complete train wreck on my 40th birthday. Yours will certainly be alot quicker and 6 months is very doable and realistic

For me, cutting out the starchy foods at dinner has proven to be ideal -we subbed Quinoa and greens like Chard, Kale, and Spinach.
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Old 07-12-2014, 09:59 PM   #3
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I know you'll own your goals Mike
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Old 07-12-2014, 11:22 PM   #4
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Good to see you around here again, Mike.

Best of luck with your health, physique and strength goals, mate.
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Old 07-13-2014, 07:09 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeM View Post

Anyway, I originally got into lifting to get strong and fit so I could still keep up with my kids as I got older, but kind of got sidetracked chasing powerlifting numbers. I think that has been my excuse for over eating and landing myself in my present condition. 217 lbs at 5'7.5" and 49 years old, and fairly strong, much stronger than I was before, but not really any better able to keep up with my kids or even look like I lift, much less look fit and healthy. .
Hello Mike, very happy to see you posting again.

Chasing the powerlifting numbers is so seductive, isn't it? I am just a bit older than you (52), a tiny bit shorter and around the same weight (213 as of this morning). I regularly go on walking holidays where my lack of conditioning comes to the fore and is an embarrassment.

If your goal is to keep up with your kids, much as I hate to say it, I think getting some weight off will be a key factor. When I went walking in April, I had been very inactive physically, but my weight was about 207. I found I was flying up hills; it felt like I was ten years younger. When I went walking again in late May, I was back up to 217 and even though I was training regularly, I found the going much harder.

Based purely on this (poor) anecdotal evidence, it does seem to me that carrying more weight than you need to has a disproportionate effect on ease of moving around.
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Old 07-13-2014, 08:29 AM   #6
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Great to see your back to training.
Life has its bumps and potholes, forges character.
Not sold on weight loss fixing low t findings, however it will improve energy levels among other positive health factors.
Sprints, Fartlek training are excellent conditioning tools. Try not to go all out your first few times it can increase the risk of injury (learn from my mistake).

Here's to getting ripped in 2014,
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Old 07-13-2014, 08:41 AM   #7
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Good to have you back mike. Smash those numbers and the gut!
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Old 07-13-2014, 09:06 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
So I've taken some time off due to really poor work/life balance and some health issues I need to resolve. However school is over, long family vacation done and life is getting back in order so I am back in business now, just with some new goals more health related than a powerlifting total, although I do want to get some goals there too.
Good to see you back, Mike. It is good to hear you ironed out your health issues. Mike, there is absolutely no greater wealth, than your health; this is the catalyst that drives all. For without it, we have many failings and personal incapability's. The price is life, if you take the time to iron out health issues.

Quote:
My most recent physical revealed a low test number, 251 for those of you that know what that means, and I have been flat out told I need to lose a chunk of weight or face the consequences as I get older. Doc thinks my losing weight will help the testosterone number as well. We'll see on that. I think that has been my excuse for over eating and landing myself in my present condition. 217 lbs at 5'7.5" and 49 years old, and fairly strong, much stronger than I was before, but not really any better able to keep up with my kids or even look like I lift, much less look fit and healthy.
A few years ago, I was at 200lbs (5ft 7in), and late 40's, as well. During my youth, I did not lift any iron, never really needed to, as my set (genetic) strength level was very high, and seen me through the military (basic and Officer candidate school, police academy), but this changed in the 40's. I got fat and began to have serious lower back pain issues, and my set (genetic) strength levels bottomed out. To make this a short story (as to not bore you), I was told to unfat myself, because after testing, this was the issue. So, I set a course to do just that, and made permanent life-style changes, and never looked back.

You see Mike, being fat at the time, "was my fault". The lowering of my set (genetic) strength, while age-connected, is also my fault.

Why? Because, I have 2 hands, two feet, connected to an able and willing body, that will always adapt to what is applied. The body is accumulation of its past history, and to change the past, you have to change the present. If you change the way you think, the way you think toward things, change.

You, Mike, can do this too. The beauty of the iron and diet, is that we have "so many optional goals to choose from", that we can change dependent on personal variables and personal wants. One of the most important factors I have learned in the years I have spent earning personal goals, is to "strum your own heart and not someone else's". Look in thy heart for the motivational fruit, and it will grow and prosper. It is this base that will branch-connect your brain and make the joint-connection you need through the good times and the bad times.

While it is possible your normal testosterone could change to normal with diet, exercise, and lower level of body fat, I would check this periodically to be sure it is not low for other reasons of no fault of your own. While we all want self-sufficient bodies, not all have them, and it is possible an organ or a series of other issues inside are not doing their job adequately and needs help.


You will do well, Mike, trust the wisdom of your heart, and give it all you have, and there is no choice but to win.


Best regards,

Don
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Old 07-14-2014, 05:33 PM   #9
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Thanks for the well wishes and inspiration fellas! I am focused on the end result now. I know I will get there with your help and encouragement.

Tann, you are spot on. And this gut needs to come off come hell or high water. I tend to carry all my extra weight in my spare tire, and the doc was pretty clear that I am rolling the dice with heart and other risks if I don't get serious about trimming down the flab. Ha, my mom said either lose the gut or make a plan for someone else having to take care of your kids if something was to, happen. I remember Moe saying something to me once before about not wanting to have family have to take care of you if you have a stroke or something.

Now, to be sure, my health is relatively fine. I need cholesterol medication and my blood pressure has crept to the upper end of normal, but with my family history of heart attacks, it has finally sunk in that I should be doing a lot more to stay healthier.

So the journey started today. Wasn't the greatest day ever as the heat literally floored me at one point (It cracked 100 in garage today, outside was like 97), but the concrete floor was cool and I kept well within myself so as not to push too hard after a 3 month layoff.

Monday - Lower
Warmups: Jump rope 2x 1 min, McGill Big 3

Power Clean: 3x 5x 95 (easy, add 10)

Squat:
3x 8x 225 (A little too hard, back up on this)

GM's
3x 10x 135

Pause Squat:
5x 1x 225

One arm Farmer's:
3x 100 feet or so with 63s (heat made this hard, but not too bad)

Started on a light barbell complex, but that was too much and stopped. Did some back yoga and that's that.

Cardio: 20-30 min biking the neighborhood.

Going to split up the cardio away from the lifting though. Like a morning/evening sessions each day.


So, all in all not a bad first day all things considered.
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I am Anton Zdravko Martin!

Best meet lifts: Sq 150 Kg (330 lb), Bench 120 Kg (264), DL 160 (352) @89 Kg (197)
Best gym lifts: Sq 375, Bench 280 (pause), DL 385 @205 or less
Goals: 3/4/5
Goals beyond my wildest dreams, 600 Kg raw total, 200/160/240

Hack away at anything which isn't essential. Do what you love, and do it often. Fazc.

Everything competes for recovery so more assistance is not always the best idea. miked96

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Old 07-14-2014, 06:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
My most recent physical revealed a low test number, 251 for those of you that know what that means, and I have been flat out told I need to lose a chunk of weight or face the consequences as I get older. Doc thinks my losing weight will help the testosterone number as well. We'll see on that.
Mike, in December 2012, I had my T levels checked and was at 290-ish. At that time I was 29 and a candidate for HRT. About a year later, I was rechecked and was sitting in the low 700's, which is towards the high end of my age bracket.

I basically followed this guy's plan - and as far as I can tell, it worked.

I have some more thoughts about this but don't want to clutter up your log right now.

Quote:
So this log will be all about getting back to my original goals of being fit and strong as well as address weight loss intelligently and strengthening my core to resolve my low back issues. I am going to do the McGill Big three as warmup on lower days among other things, but certainly any advice on that will be appreciated.
Brian Carroll has a whole series of articles and videos on back rehab with Stuart McGill which you might already be aware of, but if not seek them out. Lots of good advice. I blew my L5-S1 last year and have been doing ab wheel, planks, and rotational exercises (mainly palloff presses). Get your abs strong and your hips mobile.

Anyhow, good to see you back getting after it.
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