T Nation

Turning 34 and Looking Ahead

Hi all,

As the headline says, I’m turning 34 come NYE-and getting married next year-so figured now might be a good time to see what awaits me.

I’ve been a long-time proponent of the Bill Starr 5x5, heavy benching etc. Put up good numbers but it’s come at a price-torn shoulders, hurt back etc…Anticipating things might get harder, I’ve invested in stim/tens units, massage guns, bands, a home gym etc. Still would like to keep playing (co-Ed) flag football and basketball as I get up there…but overall -be it playing those sports, wanting to progress/maintaining, fighting Father Time and a dad bod etc- tips or transitions are more than welcome. I’ve long since heard that cleans/benching/deadlifting etc becomes too taxing as you age . And ya know what? They may be right? Outside of badly sprained ankles, I’ve never had a serious leg injury, and I’ve (for a few years) felt my ability to jump-really jump and to some degree squat heavy-be restricted. Hard to describe it, but it almost feels like there’s a band wrapped around me knee caps on down :man_shrugging:

Any tips or auggeated workouts are welcome.

Jumps, explosiveness, goes first. I’m sure others will jump in and explain fast twitch, etc but it goes first. Do cleans/benching/deadlifts bother you now? I think you’ll find there’s a lot of lifters on here a lot older than 34 still doing them. But everyone is different. Welcome aboard.

I’m at a similar age and after a few years of heavy lifting on traditional big 3 plus nearly 20 years of playing rugby I’ve got issues with lower back/shoulder/ankles.

I listened to a podcast with Jim Wendler, Dave Tate and a couple of others in the powerlifting world (not sure who as it’s not an area I’m massively interested in) and during it they were discussing how they’ve modified training and using different exercises to ease pressure on joints but still going heavy.

I’ve found that doing 5/3/1 and changing my lifts to what suits me so going to SSB Squats, Floor Press and Seated OHP in my most recent cycle seems to be allowing me better recovery. Having said that I’ve also started to include more conditioning in the form of metcon’s or crossfit style WOD’s and only wish I’d incorporated all of these facets into my training sooner.

Nope, aside from limited -not depleted only limited-hips, I still feel ok.

Hops *

Squat/Bench/Clean are cool, but they can be a little much if you’re doing them all, every time you’re in the gym.

To give yourself a break from the big stuff but still train you could work in some “Accessory Days.”

Like you could do some lunges or split squats, ham curls and Tibialus/Calf work instead of squatting on days you Clean heavy.

You could do chest supported rows, 45 degree back raises and DB shrugs instead of cleans once week or something.

If you’re looking specifically for what’s to strengthen your lower legs and improve jumping, check out Knees Over Toes Guy on ewe-tube.

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