TRAINING OVER 40

By the time we hit our 40’s our minds might still be willing, but our bodies tend not to want to cooperate quite as much as when we were in our twenties and made of rubber bands and magic.

Remember age is a product of all the things we have exposed our bodies to and the compensatory patterns that result. So, everything from injuries to the way we sit, stand, walk, and sleep along with any habits we have picked up along the way all take a toll on our posture and performance. We therefore need to take these things into consideration when we are deciding how to best train.   

There are three principles that I think are super important to be aware of as you get older. If you are still in your twenties however, ignore this post and go train your ass off!

Principle One
Compensatory Acceleration Training (CAT)

The one principle I like more and more as I get older is CAT or compensatory acceleration training. I first read about this in an article Charles Poliquin wrote about 20 years ago referring to Louie Simmons methods of using submaximal weights but applying maximal force. It allows you to get great results without 1, using too heavy weight and 2, the need to go to failure.

Principle Two
Recovery

As you get older recovery is paramount. Recovery both between sets as well as between workouts. Pushing yourself to the limit is great but it needs to be managed properly and going above and beyond your limits with the use of overloading principles such as forced reps, rest pause and drop sets get used very sparingly in my training nowadays. For most is simply not necessary and often counterproductive past the age of forty if training naturally. In fact, I can’t actually remember the last time I needed a spot. 

I also include a lot more mobility into my week. This includes before, during and after training sessions where necessary as well as dedicated sessions specifically to mobility and soft tissue work. 

Principle Three
Consistency

As they say, consistency is king.

Taking note of the above two allows you to abide by what is possibly the most important principle; consistency. It’s about training hard enough that you get a training response but not so hard that you can’t back it up. This is where am 8/10 workout is in the long run better than a 10/10 workout. You can easily put together four 8/10 session in the week but if you demolish yourself with a 10/10 workout it will more than likely be followed up with a 4/10 or a missed workout. Think about how you manage your training within each workout as well as how you manage your week as a whole.

A smooth steady approach will always be best and keep you feeling good both in and out of the gym.

Train hard but most of all, train smart. 

Marty

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