Building upper body strength? Train your legs with less weight.

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Baron, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. Baron, as an aside, wouldn't the rather high volume that you're presently employing also increase cortisol, especially over the longer run? I imagine it must be something of a balancing act, eh?

    Another thing that occurred to me is that is that single digit body fat levels require an inordinate amount of effort, because the body naturally resists it, and so can be a stressful state. As you well know, even pro bodybuilders don't maintain such leanness year round.

    Regarding your comment that working out 3 days a week can't get you into the single digits, I am reminded of my 3-day-a-week routine in the early 90s when I clocked in at 7% for a brief period in my ~mid-30s. I acknowledge that I did a lot of volume per workout. And that the fat was measured using calipers, so I know that the reading (estimate) was optimistic. Even so, I wasn't dieting; I was just eating sensibly.

    I'm actually glad you're doing it the way you are, because I'm curious to know how you will fare and how long you will be able to sustain it.

    One other thing of note is a piece I read a few days ago about a 60-year-old guy who decided to compete for the first time. You're much younger, so the comparison is not entirely appropriate, and you are bigger. But the guy is quite lean, especially at 60:

    Victory at 60

    Stepping out of the Gym Brings Unexpected Accolades

    I competed in my first bodybuilding contest—at 60—and won in more ways than one. The contest was the 2015 Natural Badger Classic

    I won the Over-60 category, took second in the Mr. Wisconsin Division, second in Novice, and placed fifth in the overall contest.

    The comments from the other competitors, judges, and the audience between the pre-judging and final show were overwhelming. One of the judges made a point to find me to say, “You are what bodybuilding is all about.” I was approached by two contest promoters who asked me to enter their contests. My only objective in entering was to have the experience of being in a contest and to show that a person over 60 could train for and be competitive in bodybuilding. I never imagined the experience would have gone the way it did. It seems like a dream. But the trophies in my home gym prove that it did in fact happen.

    I have been active in bodybuilding and fitness since age 13, training alone in my home gym. I keep a journal of my workouts and at the time of the contest I had logged 5,336 workouts. I had always worked toward entering a contest but my lack of confidence kept me from trying it. I never thought I was big enough or lean enough to be competitive. But after turning 60 and watching the 2014 Natural Badger Classic I decided I’d give the 2015 show a try. I started training in earnest the day after the 2014 event.

    I made many mistakes along the way. I seriously over trained. The thought of being on stage for the first time drove me to weight train for 2 hours and 30 minutes with another 40 minutes of cardio training 5 days a week. I got completely lost with my diet and cut back to 800 calories a day. After 4 months of this routine I was no bigger and no leaner. I was frustrated and lost. So I found a trainer, Dawn Goettl, to help me with posing and final contest preparation. I also listened to a friend, Jack Mazzenga, and remembered what Clarence Bass said about rest between workouts, counting calories, keeping meals consistent, and eating foods as close to their natural state as possible.

    I completely overhauled my training approach and finally started to see progress. Still, I never felt as though I was lean enough, which why I was so overwhelmed by the results.

    It’s plain to see what all the fuss is about. Dan is pure muscle and bone. It’s hard to see how he could be leaner.

    Bodybuilding and fitness training have been a core part of my entire life. I told family and friends years ago that I would still be lifting weights when I was 60. It doesn’t seem like that much time could have passed, but here I am holding true to my commitment. The driving force that keeps me in this lifestyle is love of the challenge to be better every day, having the discipline to be prudent with diet and keep lean. It’s not always easy, but feeling and being fit is the ultimate reward for me—and it has no age limit.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    #11     Feb 8, 2018
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