Ok so any age may be an exaggeration, we are looking mainly at men in the 30 to 55-60 range, which is typically when we all the majority of us start to have our second wind at the gym following the jibes about the ‘Dad Bod’ we are now sporting, unfortunately many of us go back to the gym and do not realise that (as sad as it is) the original flushes of youth have left us and our bodies do not react to training as they used to, infact from age 30 it has already started CHECK THIS LINK, but it definitely does not have to be this way.
After 30 testosterone starts to decline, this means that where once in our teens or mid twenties we only had to look at a weight in the gym and grow, we now have to think things through and adapt to our the way our bodies need to be trained, more stimulus is required for the same effect and more nutrients are required due to less efficient metabolisms, and this is just taking into consideration natural decline, it is not factoring in any lapse in physical activity that may have crept in due to work commitments and families and so on, The task is to find a way of training, a method that can be applied that would maximise returns, actively boost growth hormone, testosterone production and sensitivity to nutrition, I give you Strongman Training, or large compound movements that require co-ordination from all muscles in the body.
Studies have been conducted on the subject and the results are nothing less than staggering as far as I am concerned, one study found that after a prescribed set of traditional strongman event exercises there was a 54% increase in salivary testosterone in a group of sixteen men between 24 and 44, even allowing for the small sample size of the study that is an astounding result, and it is backed up by many studies both scientific and anecdotal, as with most of these things the budget for study is limited so they are are never huge, but if you think about the occupations that mimic these types of movements, you see solid fit men well into their 50’s and 60’s, I am thinking about in the construction trade, farmers and road workers, I know that these occupations generally bring their own issues but these are more of a result of the extended period of exertion as opposed to the type of exertion.
Types of Exercise Suggested
As previously stated these are all big gesture compound movements and taken to failure, which is also easier to do with these exercises as opposed to say, Bench Pressing where failure can mean you are trapped under a bar waiting for somebody to let you out !
- Farmers Walk
- Chain Drag
- Atlas Stones
- Keg Carry
- Tire Flip
- Over head Press
These are just a few and I completely understand if you do not have the facility to do these at your gym, but there are ways to simulate the movements, you could use dumbells for the Farmers walk, and a squat bar for the frame carry, also concentrating on squatting and deadlifiting as opposed to leg press or bent over row, basically you are looking to engage the largest amount of muscle participation you can in a movement, it may feel odd after doing a lot of concentration exercise, but you can always put those in at the end, and benefit from the added hormone boost as well.
I have switched to this way of training now (being a man of a certain age) and I have to say that initially it has been brilliant, after a workout I am actually more energised, my sex drive is through the roof and I am normally jumping around like tigger, it doesn’t always make me popular with the wife but all in all it has been a success for me and something I am going to continue, I have added some links below and I am going to do some articles on the different movements in the future, so happy training and remember as cliche as it is age is just a number, there is no reason why we should grow old before our time and start to slow down before we are ready to, with adaptation (a human quality we are all born with) we can continue living how we want to for almost as long as we decide.
- Study on testosterone increase
- Effects of Strongman Training
- A Comprehensive Study of Strength Training – PDF file
- Nice Site showing Exercises performed