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Back into Lifting After 20 Years. Feeling So Confused and Lost

Hey all.

YUP, I am getting old. I am now 51 and did not train for the last about 20 years. Before stopping I trained for around 10 - 15 years with fantastic results. It was old school training and I LOVED it. Sadly life caught up with me and stupid me stopped training from one day to the other. My lifes biggest regret.

Anyway. I need help getting things going again since I somehow cant find the dance with a great program, and all thos MILLIONS of youtubers and bloggers are NOT helping me being less confused.

A LITTLE ABOUT ME AND WHAT IS GOING ON.

Ok, I am 51. I am not what I would call a beginner since I have a lot of prior training experience but my body is working different with a few health problems like a rotary cuf not 100% and a spinal fusion in the lower part.

I am overweight, and would like to get this burned of by building strength and mass. I LOVE training hard and go 110% EVERY session.
Trying to find the balance of being on a caloric deficit while training seem to be rather difficult for me. I am now at 2600 Calories a day when training, and my hight is 180cm and weight 115Kg.
I believe that my lean body weight should be around 85-90Kg now, but I am not sure so even here I am floating around in space.

Program for the last 2½ month:
5 day push/pull program

Pull:
Lat Cable pulldown Chest 6x12
Cable Row 6x12
Bend over row 6x12
Incl bench. DB row 6x12
Reverse Hyperextension 6x12
EZ Bar closegrip Biceps 3x12
EZ Bar widegrip biceps 3x12
Concentration curls 2x12 3 set dropsets to failur
ABS Leg raises 4x15

Push:
Bench press 6x12
Incl. Bench press 6x12
Cable fly low to high 6x12
Cable fly front 6x12
Shoulder lateral raise 6x12
Cable Pull to head 6x12
Arnold Press 6x12
ABS Leg raises 4x15

Legs:
Squat
Deadlift
Leg extensions
Leg Curls
Seated Calf raise

I love this program, and I feel strong in a way that when I leave after training I dont feel fatigued. I dont feel like I used to where I hardly could lift my arms or turn the steering wheel after training.
There is something wrong with me.

I am now taking Sustanon 250 once a week and it is somehow helping. I am very vigilant with my food. NO PROCESSED food.

My Macros are:
Protein 240g
Carbs 240g
Fat around 75

I am using Creatin 5g/day
BCAA while training
Isolate Whey protein
Multivitamin daily

MY GOAL:
I want to be the best looking grandad around. I want for next summer to go to the beach and look GOOD. I want to feel the muscles grow and see the result.

I am having no problem going 110% and I am not afraid to take a cycle or 2 of TRT

I need some help here to get a good program that can help me to take me where I want to be. I am fucking tired of hearing from the younger guys in the gym that I cant do it and that I am to old.

PLEASE HELP THIS OLD but STRONG dude getting his program optimised for results PLEAAAASSSSEEEEE

What’s up with the weights you lift? Are they going up? Are you getting more muscley?

You mentioned 2600 calories. How long have you been eating that amount and what’s happening to your Body Weight during that time?

What’s up with the weights you lift? Are they going up?
They are going up, but somehow not as much as I would like it to. Dont feel that I get stronger.

Are you getting more muscley?
I am seeing a little progress, but it is rather difficult to se under the fat. But yeah, there is progress.

You mentioned 2600 calories. How long have you been eating that amount and what’s happening to your Body Weight during that time?
I started with 1700 Calories and I saw very good weight loss, but was so exhausted when training, then I pumped it up to 2000, and felt better but fatigued fast. Then after som TDEE calculations I found that 2600 is a good spot for me (maybe)

My weight has gone up, from 108 to now 113 over the last 3 months.

I dont know If I am overtraining, but DAMN I love to lift like that but it takes a lot of time :slight_smile:

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You’re doing like 24 sets per body part. I’d call this “high” volume.

And you’re hitting each body part 3 times in two weeks. That’s pretty frequent.

You mentioned “Overtraining.” Science dudes tell us that we can grow on 10 sets (+/-) per body part, per week. And that 20 sets per week is like the upper limit of useful workload. You’re getting an average of like 36 sets.

So yeah, even if you don’t 100% believe the lab coat guys recommendations, you’re doing Lots of volume. And you’re Surviving the workouts, but not really Thriving and adding lots of weight to the bar. It does sound like overtraining.

I would try to lower the number of sets per workout, or the number or workouts per week. And hopefully doing Less work will allow you to Recover more between workouts so you can get stronger and lift Bigger weights. Instead of just getting recovered enough to lift the same weights over again.

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I ACTUALLY like Science dudes. They know so much :nerd_face: Problem is just that there are so many of them LOL.

I DO believe that I am overtraining. It just is so difficult not to when you go home from the GYM and feel that you could do more.

In my world it is about, or at least when you are 20 years younger that if you dont go 110% on this then you did not do enoug. I offcourse have to understand that science and my age have progressed :rofl:

I have been sitting and playing with the thought of changing my entire program, and I hope that you would allow me to run it with you. It is VERY similar to what I did when I was younger, and puts a lot more focus on strength than mass.

It is a 3 day a week full body program, but I believe it is also intensive. It will give my body time to recover better I think.

It is based on strong progressive overload. Like 5 - 7,5kg/week
Start weight will be 50% of my 1RM

Deadlift 2x5
Barbell Squat 5x5
Barbell Military Press 5x5
Barbell Inclined BenchPress 5x5
Bend over Row 5x5

ISOLATION EXCERSISES
Dumbell Shoulder side fly 4x12
Barbell Biceps Concentration curls 4x12
Triceps Straight bar pushdown 4x12
Calf Isolations 4x12
ABS

Even starting at 50%, doing all those exercises three times a week will probably grind you down in a couple months. The exercises are all good, but the frequency, especially of squats and deadlifts, will probably overtrain you quickly.

One thing that’s not been mentioned is cardio. Are you doing any? If so, what type, how often, and for how long? Daily, brisk walking is beneficial for many things, including fat loss and body recomposition, and it’s restorative instead of draining.

You say you’re taking Sustanon 250 once a week but are not scared of a cycle or two of TRT?

Might be a little early in this comeback to be injecting yourself - better to rebuild your foundations first. After 20 years out of the game you don’t want to be taking shortcuts - longevity needs to be your priority, so slow and steady is your friend here.

My two cents would be less volume on the weights and add in cardio at least once a week.

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For us Americans, that’s about 5’11" and 253#.

This I believe.

This I do not. Unless it was water weight from the Sustanon, an active 250# male will lose weight on 2600 cal/d, not gain it. You are not being honest (with yourself) regarding how much you’re eating.

My impression is, you are one of ‘us’: Guys who love to train, but also love to eat, and hate to diet. (Welcome to the club; I’m President-for-Life.) You are currently in the Denial phase of your weight-loss journey, in that you believe there is a Magic Workout (+/- PED) that will allow you to train your way to the physique you want without having to stress too much about your diet. I hate to burst your bubble, but unless you’re willing to go to the dark corners of the PED universe where no sane 51 year-old would go, you’re not going to get the physique you want without suffering diet-wise. You cannot “get this burned off by building strength and mass.” If you train hard but continue eating the way you are, you will go from being a ‘strong fat guy’ to a ‘very strong fat guy.’

You have to lose at least 60# (27 kgs)–probably more–in order to get truly lean. That is definitely do-able by your goal of next summer. But in order to accomplish it, you are going to have to suffer–there is no way around it. And a 60# loss requires a lot of suffering–literally months of feeling low-level hungry and high-level deprived all the time. (I have done it, and after age 50 like yourself.) Sorry, but there is no other path from where you are to where you want to be.

tl;dr Train any way you feel like training, because it doesn’t matter. Consistent dieting is the only way to reach your stated goal.

Even starting at 50%, doing all those exercises three times a week will probably grind you down in a couple months. The exercises are all good, but the frequency, especially of squats and deadlifts, will probably overtrain you quickly.

Would you suggest just to do each muscle group once a week.

One thing that’s not been mentioned is cardio. Are you doing any? If so, what type, how often, and for how long? Daily, brisk walking is beneficial for many things, including fat loss and body recomposition, and it’s restorative instead of draining.

Hmmmm, I dont know if it counts that my work is farming, and not just sitting in a tractor all day :slight_smile: I am between 10-15000 steps every day, but dont know If that can be counted as cardio.
Beside of the above I am not doing cardio just a lot of physical work

You say you’re taking Sustanon 250 once a week but are not scared of a cycle or two of TRT?
I am on Sustanon due to very low Testosteron. Usually you would inject yourself once every 3 weeks, but I had to increase mine to once a week :frowning: that is how low my Testosterone level was. A bit scary

Might be a little early in this comeback to be injecting yourself - better to rebuild your foundations first. After 20 years out of the game you don’t want to be taking shortcuts - longevity needs to be your priority, so slow and steady is your friend here.
You are ABSOLUTLY right. It is way to early to start thinking about roiding myself now. I guess I just pushed myself into a corner of frustration. Better to do it right from the start.

My two cents would be less volume on the weights and add in cardio at least once a week.
It might be more beneficial for my old joints probably to get down with the volume, and instead focus more on heavier progressive overload

I think Sustanon once a week IS “roiding”! That seems way beyond TRT. Maybe some-one better informed than me will comment on that.

Forget your age. I’m 53, and other than injuries from contact sports I don’t see too much wear and tear. For context, I’ve had two hip replacements including one earlier this year. I train 4 times per week: legs; chest & back; cardio; shoulders & arms.

At your stage I don’t think the split is too important - forget “optimising”. I would train each muscle group once a week with very strict form, initially three working sets per exercise, and once you can nail three sets of 8 - 12, then increase the weights.

Form first, then weight.

The other thing to consider is including more prehab work. For instance, I do a lot of rotator cuff exercises to keep my shoulders healthy.

Good luck… and most important: stick with it!

I think I will stick with my routine and just take the volume down and concentrate on progressive overload and strength

What is your 10-4 on this novel I just wrote

I am not sure that I will call it “roiding”, but I sure can tell that I feel very good mentally and physically. I guess I will find out in 2 weeks when I will go visiting the nice guy in white :slight_smile:

I should forget my age, and that ismaybe the problem. I am trying to train like I am still in the 20.
I am blessed that I only have a spinal fusion and a rotary cuf problem. It is nothing compared to 2 hip replacements. I admire people like you just getting back up on the horse again after such operations. CUDOS man

I think that I will keep the program I use now, but cut some of the excersises out of it and go down in volume. More strict form and more progressive overload to build a strong foundation. We all like to see results, and sometimes we forget about the pleasure of just training and working out.

Can you tell me what excersises you use for your rotary cuf, cause mine is acting up due to OLD injury.

Sticking with it I will. Just need a little guidance from people like you guys in my age.
I am really appreciating all the input I can get, and I wish that I could give you all a drink or 10.

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Very precisely put. Seems I am also one of “us” then. :thinking:

Oh well, “strong fat guy” is better than “weak fat guy” I guess :laughing:

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LOL Wellcome to the club.

Just better to be lean and strong :slight_smile:

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I think you’re on the right track.

The thing that jumps out with your current routine is how you’ve got All the moves on one day. “Push” is chest And shoulders. “Legs” has squats and deads.

You could easily have a setup like

Push 1
Bench 3 x 10
Incline Bench 3 x 12
Flies 3 x 15

Then Push 2
Arnold Press
Lateral Raise
Triceps

And

Legs 1
Squat
Leg curl
Leg Extension
Abs

And Legs 2
Deadlift
Leg Extension
Leg Curl
Abs

That way you’d still get to hit all your favorite lifts and body parts. You’d be doing fewer sets (less volume) per day so you could push the weights heavier. And you’d get more than a week to recover and get strong before you repeated a lift again, without having to sit around, avoiding the gym.

I’m glad there is a president of the club. I wondered who I was sending my money to each month…

Yeah looks like doing a lot of unnecessary/fluff work. Read 10 Dan John articles for some overall training clarity…

:rofl:

Yeah, for sure. But I like craft beer & chees just that little bit more than being lean. So it is kind of a loosing battle…