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Gaining lean mass when you hit 50 years?

kdtl61

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I'm directing this question to the guys that have been in the game for some time. Who are now late 40s to early 50s. I would also ask the trainers that have worked with this age bracket of client to chime in.

What methods of training do you now use?
Did you make any major nutrition changes?
How did you address the aas usage to help with lean mass gains?

I have been training for 20 years. I have competed for several years. Last time out on stage was 2007. I have kept my weight at the 200# mark for the last 3 years. On just hrt. I'm 5' 6". I'm not the kind of guy that just blows up and can eat extreme calories daily. If I have a high calorie day (3500 dont laugh) my body does not want to eat much the next day. So, my average daily calories are 2600.

I'm setting some long term goals for myself. I want to get back on stage at 50years of age. It might be as far out as Master Nat. July 2012. I have always dieted down to 176# and compete as a middle weight. Phil you once told me if I had taken LBA I might have kept 10# of lean mass. It has stuck in my head:)

I would like to add whatever lean mass might be possible in the next 1.5 years. I just want to break into the light heavies in the low to mid 180s. I know building bigger wheels and a thicker back would help balance me out.

So, I guess getting advise or your ideas how us older guys can make real gains is what I'm asking for.

Please ask me whatever you wish. I can post a current pic or two if you like.

Thanks for any info you can share with me.
K
 

oldfella

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Good Question!
I am 51 in a couple of months. What I will say is this. At our age (50ish) while not impossible but improbable is the way I would describe putting on more muscle mass. I believe it is more a case of gaining what we had or muscle memory. I think anyone that thinks they will build appreciable mass beyond what they used to carry years ago might be living a false reality. Why do you think our strength declines? Why do you think our metabolisms slow down some? It is all attributed to the ageing process and decline in lean body mass. At some point we must face a certain reality that we are older and the building process is finished for us. It will be a case of what was rather than what might be.

I am not saying that you can't make progress, not at all. I am simply saying that to think at 50 or more that you will add 5, 10,15lbs more muscle mass than you had is unrealistic. As I said, gain back what you had some years ago, yes possible. To gain over and above that, not likely. In either of those scenarios it will be the battle of your life to regain the glory days gone by, and an epic battle to add beyond that. It is a reality we must face and embrace bro.

Concreteguy, I saw you lurking on this thread, While I admire your condition and your tenacity for this sport, please be careful bro when chasing that extra mass you need to get your legs bigger and add some mass to other areas of your physique that are well behind. It is just not going to be possible. Do the best you can mate and lift hard and smart. I know from reading the train wrecks that have followed you here that you have aspirations, just do not expect miracles brother. We do not fix what we break as easy as the young ones do!!!

Just a realistic perspective from someone who has been in the game for a lot of years. Hard to swallow? Yes my older brothers it is. Do we have to like it? Well no we don't but we better learn to live with it or it will destroy you. :)
 

STEVO 47

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Strange, cause I put on more muscle mass in my late 40's then ever.
but at 53 I can maintain what I have but that's far as it goes.........
 

thebrick

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I am almost 57 myself and I will echo what OldFella and Alfresco has said. Its tough to add NEW muscle at this point but I think its still relatively easy to manipulate the base you have built over the years. If you have been training 20 years and training hard as you said, you should have a good base. In my case, (and thank you Tom for the compliment!) I think it was a case of getting my body fat down so the muscle I had built over the years could actually be seen. I know the amount of actual muscle mass I am carrying now is less than I had in my 40's when I weighed about 240 at my max. However, due to injuries incurred and wear in my joints over the years, pushing that super heavy weight isn't really feasible (at least if I want to remain injury and relatively joint pain-free for daily function).

And I will also take a key from what Stevo 47 said (and what I jokingly tell my training buddies), my goal now is to hang on to the muscle I have already built over the years.
 

kdtl61

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First thanks for all the feed back. I know this board is full of guys from all walks of life. There has to be many opinions on this topic. Also many real life experences.

Here are my thoughts why I do believe that something can be gained. Not 20 year old growth by any means. My first 5 or 6 years of training started when I was 30. I was spinning my wheels with plastic weights. Then I started to read a bit more and made some /many changes. I did not experence with aas till I was 37. I have been a very mild less is more kind of guy. I was up on stage in just a few years in 2000. From there I kept competing every spring and many falls for a few years. So, any real long off season did not happen. I have never weigh more then 208 and that was about a day. So, from 2000 to 2007 I competed at 165 very ripped to 176 stupid condom skin ripped. My point to all this detail is at times I feel like I never gave myself a chance to HOLD onto my frame much new lean mass. While all the dudes I started competing with have blasted up to big light heavies or bigger. Yes, they were all younger then I.

So, my thoughts were this. Get macro and calories up. Split legs ups from hammies and quads. Keep pulling from the floor and working out with basic movements. The last thing was the gear. I felt my contest prep always had much more aas then ever my bulking times. I guess because I never really bulked. I just slowly got back to 195 to 200# and training till I dieted again. Sorry I think I'm running on and on here.

I do want to get as much feed back as I can. I know I only put on 11# in 7 years. That was in my 39 to 46 years of age.

As for muscle memory....well I have maintained most of my lean mass because I gained it so late in life in the first place.

Thank you all again for taking time to make comments.
K
 

Shelby

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Getting this size on required major changes in all 3 areas. What worked in my 40's just doesn't work today.


This.

You won't grow if you're not assimilating more calories (eating more, and being hormonally optimized to use them properly).

But, if you do those things then you should still be able to add mass. Maybe not at the rate of someone younger, but you can definitely make changes.

And you're going to have to take your offseasons more seriously.
 
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Amazon Doll

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This.

You won't grow if you're not assimilating more calories (eating more, and being hormonally optimized to use them properly).

But, if you do those things then you should still be able to add mass. Maybe not at the rate of someone younger, but you can definitely make changes.

And you're going to have to take your offseasons more seriously.
Shelby, One of your clients is 52 and he has put on some quality muscle in the last 6 months with minimal fat gain!

And yes, off season is serious work with all that eating.
 

Shelby

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Shelby, One of your clients is 52 and he has put on some quality muscle in the last 6 months with minimal fat gain!

I had forgotten he was that old, lol.

Yah, he's doing very well... he's one that we've had to really ramp up the calories with because his metabolism is so fast.
 

pesty4077

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It is hard to attain more muscle mass at 50, not impossible, but not like it used to be. I feel I am in the shape of my life, but that requires constantly eating right and training sensible. You can get super lean at this age too, through diet. I feel like my muscle maturity is better then ever. One thing I do is eat good at all times, not just for a show. I would take my body and match it up to a guy 1/2 my age. To me, this is more important then just being bigger. At 50, your health should be your main focus.
 

kdtl61

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So Shelby and Amazon Doll do tell. This is a perfect example of what this thread is about.

However, I dont know anything about who you are talking about. It does sound like nutrition has played a big roll in his NEW lean mass gains. Not often you hear of a person in there 50s with a fast metabolism. If your 52 year old client is on this board I welcome his feed back also.

Thanks again for your feed back.
K
 

Shelby

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So Shelby and Amazon Doll do tell. This is a perfect example of what this thread is about.

However, I dont know anything about who you are talking about. It does sound like nutrition has played a big roll in his NEW lean mass gains. Not often you hear of a person in there 50s with a fast metabolism. If your 52 year old client is on this board I welcome his feed back also.

Thanks again for your feed back.
K

He's not on this board, at least not a regular poster.
His gains are strictly due to diet manipulations I had him implement (his supplementation and training haven't changed since we started).

He's just one case though, someone else might need a totally different protocol.
 

thebrick

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It is hard to attain more muscle mass at 50, not impossible, but not like it used to be. I feel I am in the shape of my life, but that requires constantly eating right and training sensible. You can get super lean at this age too, through diet. I feel like my muscle maturity is better then ever. One thing I do is eat good at all times, not just for a show. I would take my body and match it up to a guy 1/2 my age. To me, this is more important then just being bigger. At 50, your health should be your main focus.
Yes. I agree on the muscle maturity getting better with age. It just looks denser if you have been hitting it hard over the years. I also agree that the proper diet is more important than ever because your body (mine anyway) def processes nutrients somewhat differently. I also agree that with age you tend to think more in terms of health not just size. I believe that's because you have a better sense of human mortality and that things CAN go wrong vs. when you are young and tend to feel somewhat "invincible".
 

madmick

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I'm a few months from 50 and I agree with almost everything thats been said. Gaining true muscle is much harder. The thing I notice the most is how much easier it is to gain fat in the abdominal area, I could eat/bulk my ass off and gain very little in my gut. Now 1 or 2 bad eating days and I have a belly. Ive been bulking in the off season for 30 yrs now and never had this problem until the last couple of yrs.
 

Amazon Doll

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I'm 5' 6". I'm not the kind of guy that just blows up and can eat extreme calories daily. If I have a high calorie day (3500 dont laugh) my body does not want to eat much the next day. So, my average daily calories are 2600.
Here is your problem.
 

nukeM

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Here is your problem.
Thats a good part of it.Dropping all your preconceived(read old stubborn)notions about training,diet,and "other Supps",can open the door to some great improvement.Its not just regaining your old muscle memory from days gone by.Being a lifelong(no years of couch potatoe life)athlete being in optimal shape keeps you primed to make changes.If what your doing doesnt work,change it.Just the words of another old man,lol.



Just hire Shelby and get it going.
 

turbobusa

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For me at 48 I have found the hardest part is maintaining mental drive.
This would include the comitment to taking in enough quality calories.
It is a bit of a chore but that is what it takes. The other challenge is training legs with enough heavy sets(volume) of varying rep ranges dictated by wt
It is not lots of fun but it always works in conjunction to lots of food and rest.
I see no reason not to be able to add muscle after 50.
 

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