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Training Percentages Changed with Age/Injuries

I have searched the web for answers to this question and have had no luck.
Just curious on my progress.
I’m a 58 year old lifter (have been lifting most of 39 years).
Never lifted for competition other than competing with myself.
I lifted like a hybrid power lifter/bodybuilder.
Spent some time strength training HS athletes as their coach.
In the past few years I have had some set backs.
First was neck surgery for a 40+ year old injury involving a dirt bike.
This laid me up from lifting for several months.
When I started training again I had progressed to a point where I thought I could get back to some serious lifting.
Then the next hurdle…AFIB with Congestive Heart Failure(apparently from untreated high blood pressure).
Now its 2 years later. I have the heart issues under control(knock on wood) and have made pretty good progress getting back in shape.
In my late 30’s my lifts were 594 squat, 450 bench, 600 deadlift;
now at 58 my lifts are at about 75 - 80 percent of those maxes.
Does this seem like good progress considering my age and past health issues?
I feel like I am doing pretty good for an old man that has had to make a few comebacks.
What are your thoughts?


You sir are stout for 58. Probably stronger than 99% of 58 year olds. (And a lot of 20 year olds).

Sucks though, at the age of 50, I was around 330 lbs but barely as strong as I was 25 and weighing 235. Too many fuck ups I guess.


If you feel good about it, I feel good about it too!

You’re stronger than most dudes you’ll meet in your regular life, you helped the youth and you’re still training after 40 years. All that stuff is good.

I’m sure if you search the internet you’ll find plenty of older guys stronger and more jacked than you, so maybe don’t worry about doing that.

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Never worried too much about other lifters, but was curious if I was proportionately strong now as compared to the good ole days.
Coming back gets harder the older I get.


Tell us about it! Lately some of us here have been talking about aging, training and goals.

What kind of changes did you have to make to your training as you got older?

How did you come back from the neck stuff?

Do you think you’ll ever stop trying to lift big weights in the competition lifts?

I really never had to make any changes in my training due my age. I have always used a variety of programs applied to all body parts, from straight sets like 4x8-10 and 5x5 to pyramids. Before my health issues started I was discovering 5/3/1.
After my neck surgery I started back like a beginner with 3 sets of 10 on each body part, doing full body work outs until I felt I could go to upper body/ lower body rotation. I have had to give up any over head pressing with a bar due to the neck so I have to stick to dumbbells. I have cut way back on the heavy pulls as well due to the strain on the neck area that I feel with increased loads.
After my heart issues,my come back was harder. I had to take even more time off and was told not to lift heavy by my Doc. I mainly walked to work on my heart. I started back lifting like a beginner again and moved to the upper/ lower split after awhile. But I wasn’t really feeling he gains I was wanting towards my old self so I really started looking at the 5/3/1 more closely. I started by following 5/3/1 just like it was meant to be worked. Then I went to the Boring but Big version. I have since created my own versions of 5/3/1 that meet my desires of making strength gains while losing fat.
I don’t know if I will ever stop trying to lift big weights, but I’m pretty sure I won’t ever be able to lift at the level I did ( and still wish I could), but I think I will train in the same mind set. It was a bad period of time when I couldn’t lift and when I had to lift light like an aerobic type training.


Have you consulted a doctor on how it is better to train-with more weight and by a little repetition or with more repetitions and a slight burden. Which is better, to train as a powerlift or a bodybuilder in your case with heart problems.
I also have high blood pressure and I drink pills for many years , but since I began to train with weights I feel much better. On both methodologies I have no problem, but when I raise heavier I do not make a very large volume.

No I haven’t worked with a doctor on the training regime I use. I didn’t make much progress with lighter weights and higher reps. Partially due to the heart issues, my endurance wasn’t what it had once been. I wan’t getting enough intensity because of running out of gas before the muscles were taxed.
When I raised the weights and lowered the reps I feel like I get more out of my workouts. I also feel better aerobically with the lower rep workouts and walking for my heart.


I’ve noticed something like that. As I lift with weights for 1-3 repetitions I feel very good and the pulse rate almost does not increase me. I do not know, however, whether with such burdens we do not endanger our joints and tendons more. However, we are not young men, and I am now almost approaching 50 years of age.
However, congratulations. Sport is health, and more recently I read studies, that for people with high blood pressure and similar diseases, weight training is a good solution. I myself like I said, I feel better. But we must not overdo.

I’ve been wondering this myself! I’m 52, been training pretty much my whole adult life. I’d say I’m at 80 - 100% of my PBs for upper body exercises; the only one where I’ve seen a major decrease is in the squat.
Even that might be more due to me being stricter on form than losing strength. Generally though, I think I can bench and OHP just about as much as I ever could, but my legs definitely feel weaker.
But I was never as advanced a trainer as you were, so possibly never reached as much of my potential ceiling…

I think you’re doing much better than pretty good if your lifts are 75 - 80 % of your all time maxes. I think at 58 my percentages were similar. Nothing better than staying strong and vigorous as one ages.

My best/strongest workout partner took blood pressure medication for years. He stopped working out at 60 because his wife said he was getting too strong.

Assuming your heart thing is under control, your next l0 years should be really good.

Is this even possible? Is there such a thing as too strong?

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This would make me question the quality of the wife. I don’t know many good women that prefer a weaker man.

Conversely, if the dude showed abusive tendencies, maybe he shouldn’t be strong. Then again, someone like that wouldn’t listen to said wife. Odd situation, no doubt.

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I am the same chronological age as you, and my training age is just a couple of years more. As chronic, never-going-away injuries prevent me from squatting, benching or DLing at all, I’d say you’re right to feel pretty good about your lifting situation.


Been awhile since we have seen you on here. Nice to see you are still a round.


I didn’t question him about that comment. He’s a great guy and was best man at my last wedding. We all went on several motorcycle trips, and his wife was a hot 60 yr old. She also got him to sell his motorcycle.


Devil Woman!