How to build muscle after 50

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How to train to gain muscle mass even after 50? The truth is that you can still build a muscular body even in your senior years using the tips provided in this article.

Having a lean, well-shaped muscular physique will not only make you look more powerful and intimidating to other men, and more attractive to women, it will also provide you with a multitude of health benefits. Building muscle mass after the age of 50 will prevent age-related muscle atrophy, build strength, increase metabolic rate, reduce lower back and arthritic pain, increase bone density and improve cardio-respiratory health. It has also been proven that the bodies of men who are physically stronger are able to heal at a faster rate after an illness.

Can you gain muscle after 50?

For various biological reasons, the average man and woman carry more muscle mass on their body when they’re younger. The process of muscular development is gradual in childhood, reaches a peak in puberty, then progresses slowly until it gets to a complete halt. Afterward, it goes into decline. This is a process known as muscle atrophy and it is completely natural. However, this doesn’t mean that a person who is 60 or beyond cannot stop this process and achieve a healthy, muscular look. Even though older people don’t gain muscle as fast as younger people, they can still achieve some notable increases. This article presents some of the ways it can be done.

Building muscle over the age of 50

So, here are 10 ways on how to build muscle faster:

  1. Warm up

Always make sure that you take a short 10-minute walk or do a light cardio session on a treadmill or a bike, practically anything to warm you up properly before you start your workout. You can also do a 10-minute walk after you’re done to cool down a bit. You can also try calisthenics as a warm-up technique. This will warm up both your muscles and your joints. You should also take care not to expend too much energy on your warm-up sessions. You should save as much energy as possible for the main training session.

Doing your warm-up sessions at a faster pace can add advantage to your training in that it’ll strengthen the heart and help in maintaining normal blood pressure levels. There’s also the option, of beginning your workouts with a set of light stretches. Stretching is an important component of the overall training process at any age, and even more so as our bodies age.

  1. Progressive overload

They key thing to remember in training is to gradually increase the weight by small increments. You shouldn’t try nor expect to break records every time you go to the gym. Building real muscle mass is a slow process and it takes hard work, discipline, and patience. It is always better to progress gradually, than going too fast and risk injuring yourself.

  1. Weight training

You may think you’re too old to start training, but the truth is you can start at any time. Sure, starting young has many benefits, but there’s absolutely no reason to use that as an excuse. Many people have done it, and so can you. The most optimal, and of course, logical way to build muscle mass is through constant mechanical stress on the muscles, also known as weight training. You can use both free weights like dumbbells and barbells, as well as machines, anything that will keep adding stress to your muscles and force them to adapt to the ever-increasing training stimulus.

  1. Avoid jerking the weight while you’re training

You should always strive to execute each exercise with a proper form. You should never jerk the weight or swing it while doing the exercise because that takes the tension out of it, and your training becomes sub-optimal. Oh, and it’s also known as cheating. You should maintain smooth form for as long as possible. This way you’ll ensure that you’re getting the best results out of each exercise and minimizing the chance of an injury.

If you find yourself unable to maintain smooth form with heavier weights, feel free to use some lighter ones. There’s a saying in the fitness world, “form is king”. Even more so, as you get older. For example, avoid swinging the weight when you’re doing barbell curls or lateral raises. Pause for a brief moment at the bottom of the exercise, and then in a slow, controlled manner lift it back up.

  1. Higher rep range

You can use a higher number of reps in almost all of your exercises, such as 10-15 or 15-20. Higher reps done with lighter weights are much gentler to the joints, and in addition to making it less likely that you’ll injure yourself, they can also heal existing injuries. However, in order to get the most optimal results from them, you must do enough reps until you become fatigued. This doesn’t mean going to complete muscle failure, just to the point where your muscle is tired enough and you wouldn’t be able to do anything more than 2-3 reps.

 

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