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Training days per week for 40+ year old. This article made me think about it.

xpoc

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I have been lifting steady since 1984 and I "think" I have a good idea of what works for ME. But, I sometimes find articles that make me rethink things. When I decided to focus on hypertrophy over powerlifting years ago, I got great results using a P/P/L split 6x per week. Lower volume each workout, but I hit all bodyparts 2x per week. It worked and I don't think I every truly "overtrained." I made visible gains (15 lbs of muscle from age 43-48). Since then I have stagnated.

But, I always wondered "what if." A few months ago I switched to Fortitude and I really like it. It is 4x per week which is TWO less days per week than I am accustomed to. But I have not noticed any significant size or strength gains over my 6x per week program. Nor have I noticed any regression. Kind of status quo. Mentally I like the muscle rounds and stuff like that so that is a big benefit. But when it comes to actual results, I am flatlined. At my age, early 50's....perhaps I have reached my genetic limit *507-190 about 12-14% bodyfat and just a TRT guy.

BUT....I wonder, COULD I get bigger lifting less frequently? Like even 3x per week or every other day as the article suggests. Just because I can lift more frequently, does that mean I should? Would it be more optimal to train 3-4x per week rather than 5-6 times? Even if I am not overtrained, would I actually grow more?

Here is the paragraph from the article that caught my eye:

"An older lifter will progress more on a one-day-on, one-day-off schedule, or using three workouts per week, than he will with 5-7 workouts per week.

Yes, my program, The Best Workout Plan for Natural Lifters, uses more training days per week. But that system uses an extremely minimal training volume which makes it possible to use a higher frequency. But even with a lower-volume approach, older lifters might still do better on four weekly workouts."



I am not looking for an answer here....we are all different I get that. But, I wonder if other "advanced" older guys have seen any improvements in their physique from either more or less training sessions per week???
 

pesty4077

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I made great gains 5 times a week, but that was DC training. If I didn't do that, I would train 4 days a week, one body part per week, except my weak parts. I would train those twice.
 

xpoc

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I made great gains 5 times a week, but that was DC training. If I didn't do that, I would train 4 days a week, one body part per week, except my weak parts. I would train those twice.
By DC training, that is 3x per week.... so I am assuming you mean his latest recommendation for advanced lifters that he posted on IG a few years back?
 

pesty4077

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By DC training, that is 3x per week.... so I am assuming you mean his latest recommendation for advanced lifters that he posted on IG a few years back?

No, it is the DC 5 day advance routine.
 

Matsuo Munefusa

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At your age and after so many decades of lifting, no type of training will make any new gains for you. But if you are one of those who train hard, train fewer days, eat better, sleep, and rest more days, is the way to go.
I don’t think he has provided enough information for you to make the claims about his body you’re making.
 

alfresco

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I have always gotten more from less. Whenever in doubt I always do less. Have tried trading every day every other day every combination imaginable and I always come back to one training day followed by a day off. If you want to do more I think you’re not trying hard enough.

Some people get in unless intensity, I get that, but I am not one of those, to my detriment or advantage, still up in the air. I like to train but he’s going to the gym. Not my favorite place to be and I can’t wait to get out of there so it keeps my workouts at a brisk pace and hopefully keeps me from over training.

If you come back after a layoff and find yourself stronger that is a clear signal that you have been over training. If you come back quicker that means you took too much time off. Pretty simple stuff.

All the above is been one experience, observations, and what I have learned from other people. No original thoughts here, Sorry.
 

N.L....M.....

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Will be 37 this year so I’m a couple years shy of 40 but I always did best with 3-4 days a week low to moderate working sets. I’m currently doing a modified 2 way split. 1 day on 1 day off 1 day on 2 days off. I take 7-10 days off as needed which is usually around 4-6 weeks.
 

TheOtherOne55

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I understand what you're saying, but i'm not sure saying, "well im just the same-old on Fortitude" gives us really enough info to tell u anything.

GAINS come from more than just the gym. If you are 12% and want to gain more muscle, you are going to need to eat. So just doing the same WO over and changing routines will do nothing for your physique obviously. That's not how this works and im sure you know this. When you did PPL or Fortitude is irrelavant....it comes down to what you ENJOY doing at this age and what keeps you motivated to come back to gym whether it be 3 or 6 days a week. THEN, lets calories and your eating habits dictate whether you want to be bigger OR be smaller. You should be doing the SAME program for gaining muscle mass as you are getting lean as shit. Calories control all of it and you seem to be very focused on the training youre doing.
 

Dugbet

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I don’t think he has provided enough information for you to make the claims about his body you’re making.

He says that he has been training since 1984, I think it is more than likely that he has reached his genetic limit and if he wants to make improvements he will have to think in gear and not in training systems.
 

danieltx

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Father Time is undefeated.

Guys who make noticeable physique improvements in their 40s and 50s are almost exclusively guys who just started lifting in the last few years. Their chronological age is old but their training age is very young so the body is still quite responsive.

You know from my posts that I'm all about progressive overload with everything to keep crushing goals. But you're in your early 50s with 37 years of training. Altering training and / or rest days per week is very unlikely to make a noticeable change in your physique.
 

pesty4077

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Father Time is undefeated.

Guys who make noticeable physique improvements in their 40s and 50s are almost exclusively guys who just started lifting in the last few years. Their chronological age is old but their training age is very young so the body is still quite responsive.

You know from my posts that I'm all about progressive overload with everything to keep crushing goals. But you're in your early 50s with 37 years of training. Altering training and / or rest days per week is very unlikely to make a noticeable change in your physique.

I tend to agree with this. I will also add, focus on maintaining some of that muscle you worked on. It is not a good thing when you get older to take more drugs and eat lots of crap to gain mass. You can however look impressive in your 60s.
 

Alzadosghost

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At your age and after so many decades of lifting, no type of training will make any new gains for you. But if you are one of those who train hard, train fewer days, eat better, sleep, and rest more days, is the way to go.
I have to highly disagree with you on this one. Iv been training over 30 years and made my best gains after age 40. I completely changed how I train. I started training more frequently and with higher volume. I’m not talking strength gains. I basically trained heavy all my life. Injuries forced the changes. With due diligence and a more scientific approach Gains can be made at any age regardless of how long Youv been training.
 

brutus69

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I have to highly disagree with you on this one. Iv been training over 30 years and made my best gains after age 40. I completely changed how I train. I started training more frequently and with higher volume. I’m not talking strength gains. I basically trained heavy all my life. Injuries forced the changes. With due diligence and a more scientific approach Gains can be made at any age regardless of how long Youv been training.
best gains after 40 naturally or on gear? huge difference
 

Alzadosghost

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After a two year lay off from training I did trained naturally for the first 6 months and gained nearly 30 lbs. then I hit the wall and started using aas again. In the last 4 months on gear Iv only gained 4-5 lbs but Iv recomped pretty nicely. So naturally I gained most of my steroid produced back. It can def be done up to a certain point.
 

Kaladryn

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I find I can easily make gains in my late 40s but I'm working with muscle memory. I also don't think any of us are training perfectly and can't make improvements from optimizing our training in some way. There are just too many individual factors for anyone to be doing everything perfectly. And if you are completely maxed out (think Dexter Jackson-ish level) then making gains may be close to impossible, but you can still find small areas to improve in.

Also, this assumes greatly decreasing gear use for health reasons, this is critical for staying healing as we get older, and health=gains over time.
 

xpoc

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In retrospect my question is not exactly clear. It is actually more of a stream of thought lol. I guess what I am getting at is this.

First, has any advanced lifters 50+ made BETTER results by training only 3x per week as opposed to 4-5-6? This is a legit question and it dovetails into the article I linked up.

Second, and this is more of a rhetorical question (and perhaps a personal observation).... does it even matter? Once you get advanced in age and have been training for decades does programming even matter? Assuming you bust your ass in the gym does it really make a difference if you go 3x per week or 6x? My point was, I went from a standard P/P/L 6x per week workout to the Fortitude 4x per week and nothing changed for me. Keep in mind, I love Fortitude because of the unique structure etc. so that alone makes it beneficial. The fact that I look forward to going to the gym is a huge bonus. But, when it comes to physique improvements, assuming I am close to my genetic max and might actually be regressing at this point, is it even possible to make gains? Dugbet hit on it with this quote: "I think it is more than likely that he has reached his genetic limit and if he wants to make improvements he will have to think in gear and not in training systems." Granted, this is highly individual, but does anyone feel strongly about making/not making gains when you are 50+ and have decades of gym experience?
 

juggy38

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Honestly, once you get 10+ years in, and not training totally retarded, diet and drugs will dictate your size mostly.

Now, you might optimize things, like the years I was a dad to an newborn and working nightshift, it would of taken a gram of tren for me to look the same as I do now. I was living off lean pockets and whey, sleep was a myth. Training wasn’t much different.
 

N.L....M.....

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I have to highly disagree with you on this one. Iv been training over 30 years and made my best gains after age 40. I completely changed how I train. I started training more frequently and with higher volume. I’m not talking strength gains. I basically trained heavy all my life. Injuries forced the changes. With due diligence and a more scientific approach Gains can be made at any age regardless of how long Youv been training.
Agreed. Look at Skip Hill, Scott Stevenson, and John Meadows.
 

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