How to Get Stronger With…

5 TIPS. I am going to share with you 5 tips that can dramatically improve your results without having to spend anymore time working out. Let’s say that you workout 45 – 60 minutes 3 times weekly. That may be at a gym or it may be at home. You may be using resistance bands, body-weight or TRX to do your at home workouts. Or, you may be using free weights or machines at the gym, Regardless, if you will follow through and execute what you learn from this article,  How to get stronger with these 5 tips can help catapult your results to higher levels without spending any more time working out than you do now.

If you don’t workout at all, then my statement above doesn’t apply. However, if you have worked out in the past and were disappointed with your results, then I hope you’ll apply these techniques and see a dramatic improvement.

Same-Age-Different-Choices
Same Age – Different Choices

Periodization

Periodization means regularly changing aspects of your workout. So, you’ll do exercises one way for a ‘period’. Then change.

When I first started working out with weights someone taught me some exercises and reps. So I did them and started getting results rather quickly. So, I kept doing them and doing them. I kind of thought, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.”

Well after a while I learned that my “don’t fix it” idea was “stinkin’ thinkin'”. I needed to give myself a “check-up from the neck-up”. As your body gets accustom to the exercises, the amount of weight and the amount of reps your progress slows. It slows before you even realize it. However, if you keep going that way, you’ll plateau.

Periodization overcomes the slowing of progress by keeping the body surprised. Let’s say you do your exercises one week with relatively light weights and high repetitions, in the 12 – 15 rep area.

The next week you add some weight and reduce the reps, say to, 8 – 12 reps. The third week you go with yet a little more weight, 5 – 8 reps. And, if you really want to build some strength, you’ll go with a bit higher weight in week 4 which you max at 5 – 8 reps.

After 4 weeks, you change the exercises you are doing to work the same muscle groups.

That periodization shocks the body such that it goes with maximum urgency to repair the breakdown which happens from resistance training.  If you build Periodization into your workout plan after 4 weeks you’ll already feel and see the difference.  After 8 and 12 weeks, you may be amazed.  How to Get Stronger with 5 TIPS.  Work all 5 and they will work synergistically to compound your results!

Rest-Pause Sets

Rest-Pause Sets work like this: At the end of your set when you have reached technical failure and cannot get even 1 more repetition, you put the weight down, pause for 15 – 30 seconds, then one last time you do as many more reps as you can. I pause for 15 seconds and can usually only get another 4 reps after the pause.

Old-Guy-Cartoon-Overhead-Press
Old Guy Doing Single Dumbbell         Overhead Press

 

This one thing, done on the last set of each exercise will do amazing things to increase your results in gains for muscle and strength. It only adds about 30 – 45 seconds of additional workout time per exercise.

Drop-Down Sets

Sometimes called simply, “Drop Sets”, they challenge the muscles in a similar yet different way as Rest-Pause Sets. Drop sets are performed when you’ve reached the very last rep you could do, then drop down to a lower weight and crank out as many repetitions as you can until failure.

There are many, many ways to do drop sets. I will recommend you do it like this: Suppose you were doing dumbbell curls with 30 pound dumbbell in each hand. When you reached failure, you’d set down the 30 pounders and pick up 17.5 pounders. Man you will feel the burn!

I recommend for most of my readers that you only do this on the final set of your exercise.

PERIODIZATION WITH REST-PAUSE AND DROP-DOWN SETS – Week 1, use Rest-Pause Sets at the final set of each exercise. Week 2, use Drop-Down Sets. Continue to alternate those for maximum results.

Senior-Bodybuilder
Senior Bodybuilder

 

Time Under Tension

Have you been to a gym and see a guy doing bench press, allowing the bar to come down where he bounces off his chest? Or, maybe you’ve sen someone doing dumbbell curls and they are swinging with their entire body to get those dumbbells through the entire curl. While, there is a place for doing those kinds of sets, for us old guys… no. It’s less safe because you’re using heavier weight than you can lift with proper form. That increases your risk for injury. For maximizing growth in muscle and strength keeping the muscles under tension 100% of the set in HUGELY more effective if you want to grow.

When you are doing an exercise with weights, you want to keep tension on the muscles being worked 100% of the time of the set. For example: However, if you are doing barbell curls you start the movement with your arms extended downwards. There should be tension on the muscles from the very start. Stand straight. Do not move your body to create momentum. Make the arms do it all. Keep your abs flexed which will give you the rigidity so you won’t use other parts of your body. Keep the muscles tense and challenged the entire way. Pause for a one count at the top, squeezing your bicep as hard as you can. As you move the weight back down maintain a controlled pace, don’t let it drop down and bounce it back up.

training-with-resistance-bands-2
Maximizing Time Under Tension

However, if you have been working out with weights and didn’t know to maximize the muscle’s time under tension you’ve been using heavier weight than you should. For example, if you were curling a barbel of 60 pounds you might find the best weight for you to maintain time under tension to be 30 or 40 pounds. However, if you want more growth and better gains forget about the ego charge of lifting heavier poundage. At our age that should be pretty easy?

Consistency 

Consistency definition – “conformity in the application of something”

I can’t overstate the importance of this. Suppose someone decides on a workout plan that is designed for 3 times per week, 45 minutes per session for 90 days. If they execute the plan 100% they will get 100% of the possible results But miss 10% of the workout sessions through the course of the 90 days they will get less than 90% of the results they could have gotten. Let’s say they miss 4 days, about 12% of the sessions. They will likely get somewhere around 75% of the results they would have achieved. The drop off in results is disproportionate to the lack of consistency.

If you are new to fitness and resistance training you can learn about the types of equipment that are especially well suited to older guys like us, check out my article to find the equipment that is safe AND effective:  Exercise Equipment for Seniors

Old-Man-84-deadlifts-405
Consistency Yields Results – Old Man 84 deadlifts 405

What ever your workout plan is going to be for 60 or 90 days. Do everything you can to show up 100% of the time. When you don’t feel like it, show up anyway. However, if you will be traveling, either bring resistance bands or TRX to work out or find a hotel or health club you can work out at.

However, if you have chosen an effective workout plan, then, work that plan 100% and the plan will work.  If you’d like some more guidance for choosing a workout plan as an aging guy, click on the link for a terrific article on bodybuilding.com titled: What’s the best Workout for Seniors?

It bears repeating: Consistency definition – “conformity in the application of something”

However, if you go to bodybuilding.com by clicking on the following link, you’ll be able to see many, many plans. You should be able to find one that fits your unique needs: BODYBUILDING.COM

[Affiliate Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission if you purchase anything through one of the links. However, this will not affect what you pay!]

Final Thoughts

Remember this:  If you want to gain strength, work these tips into your workout plan.  If you commit to 60 days in your workout plan, you will become a living testimony so others can learn How to Get Stronger With THE 5 Tips above work synergistically to achieve dramatically better results. However, if you do any type of resistance training now, incorporate the 5 Tips for 60 days, measure your improvements and prepare to be surprised. However, if you are going to start working out with any type of resistance training, be sure to put the 5 Tips into action and you will exceed your expectations.

BodyFit Fitness App:  I’ve been using this app for quite some time.  In my opinion it is the #1 fitness app to support, educate and inspire you in your fitness journey.

I pick whatever plan I want:  Workout Plan and accompanying Meal Plan.  When I’m at the gym I click on the app and it takes me to my workout plan.  It guides me every step of the way.  It makes it SO easy!  If you’d like to try the FREE TRIAL, just click the following link:

BODYBUILDING.COM

However, if you have any questions, I will be happy to help in any way I can. I welcome your questions and comments in the section below.

Glenn
Glenn

3 thoughts on “How to Get Stronger With…

  1. Alyse says:

    Great article! I would love to improve my workout. I’m definitely going to try the How to Get Stronger With…5 tips and the BodyFit Fitness App.

    Thanks for sharing this valuable info!!

    • Glenn says:

      Thanks so much for the comments, Alyse. If you start to use the 5 tips and keep it going for 60-90 days, you’ll get fantastic results. Anyone of the 5 will make a significant difference. Use all 5 and the power of synergy gives you a return that is better than the sum of the parts.

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