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thaistyle
05-10-2009, 12:17 PM
What set & rep protocols seem to work better for you as you age. I tend to do more of 6 sets of 3-4 reps to maintain a certain level of strength and muscle. It seems that it takes me too long to recover from higher rep sets.

esplendido
05-10-2009, 01:43 PM
What set & rep protocols seem to work better for you as you age. I tend to do more of 6 sets of 3-4 reps to maintain a certain level of strength and muscle. It seems that it takes me too long to recover from higher rep sets.

That's a tough question because fitness level and ability to recover varies widely for those over 40. In addition, recovery is enhanced with HRT. More info is needed in your case, such as age, how long you've trained, are you on HRT, etc.

HeavyDutyGuy
05-10-2009, 03:00 PM
I do 1 to 2 sets to at least positive failure. A lot of my sets are beyond failure. Reps- whatever I can get might be 3, might be 17. I don't set an arbitrary rep goal.

SpeedoGuido
05-10-2009, 04:01 PM
What set & rep protocols seem to work better for you as you age. I tend to do more of 6 sets of 3-4 reps to maintain a certain level of strength and muscle. It seems that it takes me too long to recover from higher rep sets.

My workout is pretty old school, Serge Nubret style.
I train instinctively so this is an outline of my set & rep protocol, not the rule!
I do high volume, but I never count my sets. I go until the muscle feels like it has gotten the maximum benefit from the exercise and any more work would be detrimental. I usually keep the rep range to at least 8 and going up to 30 reps for legs. I rest only about 15 to 30 seconds between sets. For legs I rest up to a minute. I warm up the muscle thoroughly, sometimes for 10 minutes or so before my work sets (to avoid injury).
I like to keep the intensity high to keep my heart rate elevated. I use moderate weight with strict form to stimulate the muscle but never use max weights. Slow on the positive, squeeze the contraction, and VERY slow on the negative.... with some fast reps thrown in here & there. My body recovers extremely fast between workouts.

My training goals are to stay healthy and fit, avoid injury, and to look decent. I don't care about being the strongest guy in the gym, I just want to be the youngest old guy!
I'll be 53 in a couple of months and have been training on & off for 38 years, but I feel like I'm still a teenager!

thaistyle
05-10-2009, 07:31 PM
Hey Esplendido! To answer your questions, I'm going to be 38 in 1 week. I've been training since I was 16. I'm not on any HRT as of now. I posted this question in this forum since most consider over 35 to be "masters". I must elaborate on my protocol. The 6 sets of 3-4 is typical for me, especially when I train legs or back, but I do train sets between 3-10 reps. It's just that when I train in the 8-10 rep range, it takes me more days to recover due to the soreness.

HeavyDutyGuy
05-10-2009, 07:39 PM
35 is young, dude! You're still in your prime. Dexter Jay are about your age, and Freeman, Ruhl, Charles and Alves are all older.

esplendido
05-10-2009, 08:16 PM
Hey Esplendido! To answer your questions, I'm going to be 38 in 1 week. I've been training since I was 16. I'm not on any HRT as of now. I posted this question in this forum since most consider over 35 to be "masters". I must elaborate on my protocol. The 6 sets of 3-4 is typical for me, especially when I train legs or back, but I do train sets between 3-10 reps. It's just that when I train in the 8-10 rep range, it takes me more days to recover due to the soreness.

I think most of us (masters) are working each body part once a week, which allows plenty of time for recovery. In fact, many of the top pros do the same.
I don't think the 3-4 reps is a bad idea. I think, however, they should come after the first and second set of 8-10 for this reason: The body recruits only the number of muscle fiber necessary to execute a contraction. By performing a couple of sets with weight that exhausts you at 8-10 reps, you push the body to recruit 100% of the muscle fiber so that when you do your 3-4 rep sets, the entire muscle gets worked. It also helps prevent injury, which one light set does not.

sassy69
05-11-2009, 12:01 AM
You can also look at the PL approach w/ load & deload cycles to allow CNS recovery. Or if you do 2 muscle groups on the same day, do one group heavy, the 2nd light, the next time you do that muscle group you can reverse the order, doing the 1st light, the 2nd heavy. "Active recovery".

Altho I'm not experienced in it yet, I really like the cyclic approach to lifting so you can have 'active recovery' and not burn out, while also not stagnating or becoming conditioned to a particular type of lifting. I'm guilty of doing exactly that, often out of 'comfort' or habit, or because I like this or that approach or exercise. And then I also tend to feel like i have to push it. Normally I do 10-15 reps, 3 sets, but I'll mix it up w/ a couple workign sets and then start pushing the weight to failure, and then end w/ burnout sets. All sorts o' stuff. I'm 10 weeks out from a show and just entering my cutting phase so I'll be switching over from heavier stuff to more aerobic lifting as well. And a comment I've gotten a lot lately, despite my urge to lift as heavy as a I can, is that I don't need the mass buildign so much anymore (have lots of mature muscle mass) and as I get older, it hurts more to lift like that. So there I go by what feels "right" at the moment. Currently I push 9 plates on the leg press but my squats are still kinda tame at 225, box squats to 315, DLs at 275 cuz my form sux right now.

zander
05-11-2009, 03:22 AM
For the moment Im doing 2 exercises traditional kinda thang .. 4 -5 sets , 12-10-8-3 reps heavy as I can go, woring towards a max. Then ... I do 4-5 giant sets , pick 5-10 exercises and do 10-15 reps each without stopping. ends up like 500+ reps ...

'for me' its working well , only doing the 2 heavys is taking alot of stress off my joints that was causeing me greif last year and the volume work is bringing out some maturity and density I havent sen before. More than one way to peel an orange ;)

SpeedoGuido
05-11-2009, 04:26 AM
Hey Esplendido! To answer your questions, I'm going to be 38 in 1 week. I've been training since I was 16. I'm not on any HRT as of now. I posted this question in this forum since most consider over 35 to be "masters". I must elaborate on my protocol. The 6 sets of 3-4 is typical for me, especially when I train legs or back, but I do train sets between 3-10 reps. It's just that when I train in the 8-10 rep range, it takes me more days to recover due to the soreness.

Happy Birthday youngster!:beerbang:
Sorry, I misunderstood the question. I thought you were asking because you were curious what other masters were doing.... hence my long winded response. I didn't realize you wanted advice on your routine. I'll go back to my rocking chair now!

SpeedoGuido
05-11-2009, 04:36 AM
For the moment Im doing 2 exercises traditional kinda thang .. 4 -5 sets , 12-10-8-3 reps heavy as I can go, woring towards a max. Then ... I do 4-5 giant sets , pick 5-10 exercises and do 10-15 reps each without stopping. ends up like 500+ reps ...

'for me' its working well , only doing the 2 heavys is taking alot of stress off my joints that was causeing me greif last year and the volume work is bringing out some maturity and density I havent sen before. More than one way to peel an orange ;)

zander, your legs look insane in your avatar!
Are the giant sets working the same body part as the "2 exercises traditional kinda thang .. 4 -5 sets , 12-10-8-3 reps"?
I don't want to hijack the thread but how 'bout an example of your, lets say, leg day???

joedemarco
05-11-2009, 12:42 PM
I like to work in the 4-6 rep ranges on most basic movements. My last couple of exercises of my workout might be in the 8-10 rep ranges. I keep my overall volume of sets low.

A lot of people confuse muscle fatigue with muscle stimulation. I don't think he have to work a muscle group with high volume and high reps until you fatigue it to death. My thought is you just want to stimulate growth. To do that, you need to work heavy and keep your overall volume of sets lower. Just my 2 cents!!

esplendido
05-11-2009, 01:27 PM
I like to work in the 4-6 rep ranges on most basic movements. My last couple of exercises of my workout might be in the 8-10 rep ranges. I keep my overall volume of sets low.

A lot of people confuse muscle fatigue with muscle stimulation. I don't think he have to work a muscle group with high volume and high reps until you fatigue it to death. My thought is you just want to stimulate growth. To do that, you need to work heavy and keep your overall volume of sets lower. Just my 2 cents!!

2 cents = Priceless

HeavyDutyGuy
05-11-2009, 03:57 PM
Quality, not necessarily quantity. (For cardio its the reverse).

thaistyle
05-16-2009, 08:58 AM
Thanks for the input guys. I just wanted to know what protocol worked better for you as you mature vs. when you were younger. Judging by the avatars, you guys know what you're doing.