I lifted weights from 18-24 years old. During that time I gained 65 pounds and at my peak I weighed 225 with bf @ 10%. I looked great and was very proud of my accomplishments. Then "life" happened and I chose to focus my passion in other areas.
I decided to start back up lifting again about 2 years ago (at 32 years old). Muscle memory is a beautiful thing. I managed to get past what would normally be newbie gains in about 6 months. When I started back up I weighed 200 lbs and my bf was near 16%. I recently reached about 245 lbs with bf around 19%. I'd be happier if my bf were in the low teens so that's next on my list of goals (currently in progress).
However, my age is becoming an issue. My joints and tendons are constantly giving me trouble. In May of last year I blew out my right rotator cuff bench pressing and it took about 8-9 months before it was healed. A couple weeks ago I managed to injure my left shoulder -- extremely frustrating. I have tendinitis in my right elbow and my left knee.
My right hip feels like it is badly bruised when I squat. I managed to pull something in my right calf during seated calf raises and it is not healing very quickly. Luckily I have managed to avoid tearing muscles but my body is complaining rather loudly about lifting weights again. I'm getting to the point where I can't give it 100% on almost every movement because of some kind of injury.
I know there are guys like Dave Tate who can tear several muscles and just wrap them tightly and move on. I'm not Dave Tate. I feel like I'm just beating my body up just to keep the muscle I've gained (rather than actually gain). I know there's a turning point somewhere along the way. 34 years old seems a bit early to me but I can't continue if things don't change. It simply isn't worth it to me.
I know my test levels are getting lower because I'm experiencing the classic symptoms. I'm using Alpha Male and that seems to help but I know it is limited. Roids aren't an option for me. I'm 100% pro choice and have nothing against the guys that choose to go that route. They just aren't for me.
I'm curious what guys my age are going through. What kinds of changes did you notice during your transition from your 20's to your 30's (and beyond)? What did you do to respond to these changes?
The other point to this thread is to hopefully motivate you guys in your twenties to kick it into high gear if you aren't there already. The clock is ticking...