You have crossed 50 and trying to keep trim with as much muscle as possible, which everyone of us should aim for, no matter what age we are! Good news is, you can do it. Learn here the 4 tricks.
We asked many fitness experts – “What are the ways to build muscle mass after 50?”
Four Most Important Tips For Building Muscle In Old Age
And we compiled a basic list of just the top 4 keys for building muscle in old age:
1. Eat To Keep Fit And Build: Here is the major problem. Our diet is usually imbalanced and lacking in the crucial nutrients. That’s why we get fat and remain out of shape.
2. Move Your Ass: Another menace of the modern lives. The new technologies have restricted the opportunities for moving our bodies. People sit at desks all day.
3. Lift Stuff: Preferably heavy stuff. Make it a daily part of your life.
4. Sleep Soundly: Another casualty of jet-age living is its incursion on your sleep – quantity as well as quality. Your body is not designed for these days stressful-living and the resultant chronic stress impairs the muscle-repair and building abilities of your body.
Critical Needs For Building Muscles Beyond 50
After focusing on the above 4 key areas, we have simplified them into these three critical needs:
2. Eexercise (both aerobic and anaerobic)
3. Manage Stress.
Keeping things simple is a good strategy always!
Your muscle begins to decline at roughly 1% a year after 30 or 35. After 50, the decline picks up additional speed (yikes!). Building muscle at any age can be a challenging task; it takes time, determination and perseverance. The older you get, the harder it becomes. As you age, your testosterone levels go down, which makes it harder to gain muscle. However, harder doesn’t mean impossible. With the right training program, nutrition plan and managing stress, you can still build muscle and look great even after when you are over 50 years old.
Don’t worry – even if you are old, you can still slow down the muscle mass slide and even gain muscle mass. Here are 4 key steps you need to take right now to gain muscles:
4 Key Steps To Gain Muscle In Old Age
1. Don’t Just Stand There – Weight Training: Weight training is the # 1 way to enhance testosterone levels and gain muscle. To fend off sarcopenia, the age-related muscular deterioration (muscular equivalent of osteoporosis), we suggest two alternative approaches:
(i) For fifty+ novice trainers, best is following a full-body workout performed 3-4 times per week ((you can do up to 5-6 times a week). Full-body workouts work better to increase testosterone and growth hormone production than split workouts, where you work out one muscle group one day and another the next day. Full-body workouts also fire up your metabolism more than split workouts do. Concentrate on compound exercises like squats, dead lifts, bench presses and rows. Do 6 exercises per session that work your full body, and do 3-4 sets of 12 to 15 reps on each. Use a weight that is challenging but let you do entire sets with proper form. Begin light, and slowly increase your weights and reps week after week.
(ii) Another approach is a two-pronged workout routine. Resistance training to build and strengthen muscles, along with aerobic exercise to augment blood flow to the capillaries, supplying more oxygen to the muscles and building endurance.
Total Fitness Tips For Old People
(i) If you are new or re-starting after a long gap, consider taking help from a trainer to make a customized program for you and to guide you through your workouts – but consult with your doctor before you start. Also ensure the trainer you pick has experience training the 40+ set, so as to minimize your risk of injury from doing too much, too soon.
(ii) Once you’re looking and feeling fit – don’t give up – this is a life-long allegiance.
Read here: Weight Training For Seniors
2. Nutrition – Especially Protein, If You’re Getting On In Years: Nutrition is next important key to build muscles. As per Mark Sisson, author of “The Primal Blueprint,” high protein intake is crucial for optimal muscle growth, and essential fats are required for hormone production. Include a portion of protein from lean chicken, fish, eggs or dairy in every meal (for elderly people, whey protein is recommended) along with a healthy fat source, such as avocado, olive oil, peanut butter, coconut or fish oils. For those who look for high-quality protein from non-meat sources can include white beans, black beans, chickpeas, lentils and even leafy greens like kale, spinach, broccoli and asparagus into their diet. Vegetables too are needed, so try to include in every sitting. On the other hand, carbs are essential for recovery and energy, but too much can cause fat gain, so make sure to keep your carb sources to slow-digesting ones, such as brown rice, whole grains, sweet potatoes and certain fruits, and only in meals before and after your workouts.
Fitness Tip: My preferred source of protein for building muscle mass is whey protein. I jump on my protein needs immediately after my morning intense training is one scoop of whey protein chocolate flavor powder mixed with plain water to get 24 grams of protein.
Read here: Workout Nutrition For Gaining Muscle
3. How Much Protein: Though the perfect amount of high-quality protein you need to eat daily in order to maintain long-term muscle mass hasn’t been definitively established, you can roughly estimate your daily requirements based on the following equation: Take your body weight in pounds, divide it in half, and subtract 10. The resulting number will give you the approximate amount of protein you should be eating every day. So, for example, if you weigh 160 lbs., then half of that is 80, minus 10 = 70 grams of protein spread over the course a day’s worth of meals. In short, to slow muscle deterioration, particularly for those heading into their 60’s and beyond, high-quality protein is your best weapon.
NOTE: The joint American College of Sports Medicine and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics statement recommends 1.2 to 1.7 grams per kg for strength athletes and 1.2 to 1.4 grams per kg for endurance athletes.
CAUTION: If you have renal issues, you should work with your doctor to determine an appropriate daily protein intake for you specific needs.
Read here: Protein Supplements: Dos And Don’ts
4. Supplement Your Muscles And Strength: While we believe one should get the majority of his or her nutrition from fresh, organic, non-GM veggies, meats, organic chicken and eggs, legumes and fruits, but supplementation is a great tactic to build muscle and make good for the nutritional gaps, especially for middle-age and older adults who may not be eating enough of the nutritious foods. Out of the various supplements that are good in conserving and building muscle mass, leading the list are whey protein, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, L carnitine; Glutamine and B12/folic acid.
Read here: Best Supplements To Build Muscles
Total Fitness Tip: Consistent workout (weight training) and aerobic exercise, wisely chosen diet and smart dietary choices and vital supplementation – they’re your passport to a strong, muscular, healthy and trim body – so the sooner you hop on the, the better!
Useful Related Post: Building Muscles After 50
About Author: Renu Bakshi, AKA Fitness Buffhq, is ISSA Certified Personal Fitness Trainer & Nutrition Health Coach. He shares his experience and knowledge about nutrition and effective workouts to get you in the best shape of your life, no matter how old you may be. The author says: “For me age is just a number!”