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Forget all this weight loss, anyone lifting weights?

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  • Forget all this weight loss, anyone lifting weights?

    The IF thread is so depressing, i know it's got a lot to offer but i just waste away on that diet. And while calorie deprivation may promote longevity and even quality of life... is that all that matters? Live a long long time not eating for 16-20 hours or more per day, lean as a twig?

    I've been lifting for thirty years but not always super consistently, and not following a proven program. I consider myself a hard gainer. For 10 years I've been more consistent and for 3 years now I've been doing a modified Starting Strength program and have happily gained about 8 pounds (15 pounds in 10 years). BMI 25. I modify SS because I also run, and because I'm over forty.

    I have a goal to run a 5k in 22 min and deadlift 300 lb one rep max in the same week this fall... Honestly don't think I'm going to get there, these goals are almost diametrically opposed as one requires minimal excess weight and one requires a fair amount. I'm at about 280 on the deadlift now but as soon as I up my running mid summer, cut squats to once a week, and reduce carbs to lean out for the race I'm going to lose muscle mass and strength. If i ever could hit a goal like that it may no longer be possible at my age.

    I believe Maxpower lifts... anyone else? What program are you following? What are your goals, how long have you been lifting?
    Last edited by FIREshrink; 07-05-2021, 07:50 AM.

  • #2
    Love this thread.

    I lift 5 times a week. On a bro split mostly. Keeping pretty lean although it’s becoming harder with 3 kids. Turned 37 this year. Lifting on and off for 20 years. But pretty seriously for last 12 years or so, with some gaps in between due to intense training periods.

    Here are my two goals:
    1) not get injured
    2) not get fat

    its just maintaining from here on out. 5’11 around 185. Probably 15 percent BF, usually around 175-178 for 6 pack. Can still visible abs but not as defined.

    Used to be a runner, was able to get my 5k under 19 mins few years ago. I don’t have time to do cardio now, just try to limit my carbs and keep my diet on point, although lately it hasn’t been on point.

    I keep my reps with complex lifts around 6-8.
    Working sets are as followed:
    bench: 225-245lbs
    squat: 225-275 lbs
    DL: 315-365 lbs.

    I can probably lift harder but recovery times have become longer and it’s hurts. Deathly terrified of injuries. Just hanging on to glory days.
    Last edited by Medstud21; 07-04-2021, 02:50 PM.


    • #3
      I started doing push-ups every day in eighth grade, was doing 4 sets of 50 before freshman year of high school.

      Lifted heavy at school weight room (affectionately known as "the shed") starting at 14. Was benching 225 for 4 sets of six by junior year at 144 pounds. By 24 (about 150-153 pounds) was doing 8 reps at 225, then 4 at 245, then 1 at 275. Never tried to go higher.

      Did sets of 8 with 630 pounds on leg press machines similar to this one:

      I used to lift 6 days per week, but always at least 3 days per week since age 14. I've lifted weights at Venice Beach where Arnold and Franco once trained, at a hole-in-the-wall in Rotorua (New Zealand), in Rome, London, Paris, and everywhere I've traveled (except Santorini, because no gym on the island back in 1994).

      However, began to lose strength in my 50s. Even worse, developed hip pain with even fairly light leg presses, and AC joint pain with even moderately heavy pectoral work. I couldn't maintain the same muscle mass any more so I dropped about 10 pounds back to low 150s around the time I turned 60. That was 10 years overdue.

      I don't know if some or all of my joint problems are secondary to years of heavy lifting, but if so, it was worth it. When we had the occasional Saturday biochem exam in med school, I told my classmates that I'd give up the occasional Friday night out (a very big deal to me at the time), but if becoming a physician meant giving up my weight lifting, then I would quit. They guffawed, but I was serious. Weight lifting was a much bigger part of my identity.
      Erstwhile Dance Theatre of Dayton performer cum bellhop. Carried (many) bags for a lovely and gracious 59 yo Cyd Charisse. (RIP) Hosted epic company parties after Friday night rehearsals.


      • #4
        Originally posted by FIREshrink View Post
        I have a goal to ... deadlift 300 lb one rep max in the same week this fall...
        It's probably not a great idea to try for a max weight if you aren't competing. You'll get just as strong and look just as good by doing sets to exhaustion on somewhat lower weights, probably with less chance of injury.

        However, if it's important to you to lift a certain weight, you need to do it now. :-) I maintained my strength until 50, but then it started to fade.

        Erstwhile Dance Theatre of Dayton performer cum bellhop. Carried (many) bags for a lovely and gracious 59 yo Cyd Charisse. (RIP) Hosted epic company parties after Friday night rehearsals.


        • #5
          Used to lift using primarily following a bro split or PPL.

          Since recently hitting my 30's, I've really been focusing more on mobility/longevity. My lifting is largely bodyweight, bands/functional trainer, and a good amount of olympic ring work.

          The under emphasis of the above really started hitting home when I noticed a lot of the bodybuilding and weightlifting YouTubers I'd followed for years were releasing more and more content chronicling their recovery from their latest injury haha.


          • #6
            Over 50 and have bum knee. Started doing CrossFit to get in shape after I was non-weight bearing for 3 months after having knee surgery. A wide variety of lifting with that. Since COVID hit, my local gym had cut back its schedule so I was unable to go anymore. I turned a garage bay into a gym since. Have a rack, barbell, plates, dumb bells, kettle bells. Do bench presses, front squats, back squats, thrusters, deadlifts, power cleans, strict press, etc. mostly switch up workout to work all muscle groups 3 x a week. Lighter weights with more reps and some strength stuff in between warmup and main workout. Usually do one strength movement for the week.


            • #7
              I think strength training really is essential as we get older, especially for women. I don’t mean people should be power lifting and going for 1 rep maxes, or out of control cross fitting, but maintaining lean muscle and strength is important when we age. Also, as skin gets a little baggy, some muscle really tightens things up, and keeps up a decent silhouette, so there’s the vanity thing. You get a lot of bang for your buck with resistance training and weight loss also. It’s superior to cardio in that department.

              Look at some of these older celebrities who look like the are in their 30s when they are in their 50s and 60s. They all employ resistance training programs. J.Lo doesn’t look like that from yoga and the treadmill.

              I do mainly old school bodybuilding type stuff, very slow and controlled, with no emphasis on just swinging around big weights with bad form. But I’ve slacked quite a bit with covid closures and a new house this past 18 months. I had been going 5-6 days a week prior to that, for years.
              Last edited by Jaqen Haghar MD; 07-04-2021, 04:44 PM.


              • #8
                I apologize for talking up IF. It definitely can be annoying zealotry. Most my friends tune me out when I spout off about it. As a beneficial side effect, it motivates patients to politely end the appointment faster when I attempt to deep dive it with them. So if you're annoyed by IF, it's not you.


                • #9
                  I lifted very regular in high school and college. Took fist year of med school off and it sucked. Second year made it a priority but then third year happen and residency and kids and I never got back into it the same. I have some dumbbells at the office and squeeze a few sets in a day but it is kinda pathetic. I do pushups and situps as well.

                  Even now that I am exercising daily these past few months I still do not do enough weights. I need the cardio more so that has been my focus. I just need more time.


                  • #10
                    I used to work out infrequently high school and college, I became fat after that, think 240lbs at 5'11'' but I look 300lbs because its all top loaded. Med school, residency got in the way. For the past 2 months I have been doing 45 minutes of elliptical and 45 minutes of weight lifting targeting different body parts but avoiding deadlifts or leg press as I do not feel that is a safe movements for longevity. Thank you for this thread. Any experiences I can hear from people especially the older ones, I'm hoping to learn from.


                    • #11
                      I lift 6 days a week for 45 minutes to an hour. I started in high school and got more serious about it in college. I've been pretty consistent about lifting most days of the week except for a couple bad call months in residency.

                      I guess it's a bro split? Bench (decline, incline, flat), rows, various cable exercises, the iso machines that you add plates to, leg press, etc etc. I had to eliminate deadlift and squats because of a herniated L5-S1 that I treated with rest and NSAIDs. At 35, I mostly look to maintain strength rather than really get bigger/stronger. I like lifting heavy for stress, but I don't push like I used to. My biggest issue is diet, but I'm 5'9 and 154 lbs, so even that is mostly vanity.

                      I've gotten back into golfing a lot so I've been doing more stretching. Sam Snead used to be able to kick above his head even into his 70s.


                      • #12
                        Have a pro gym in the basement and a son who is a personal trainer so this is definitely on my to-do list to improve my quality of life while my IF and no fructose lengthens it.


                        • #13
                          I recently turned 64. Being active is so important. My main goal is to stop injuring myself. I pulled my hamstring which caused a SI joint issue. It has taken 4-5 months of PT to recover. I do yoga 2-3 times per week. I lift weights with my neighbor twice a week. I walk my dogs several miles a day.


                          • #14
                            I have been lifting fairly regularly for the last 3 years or so. Was off and on (mostly off) the 4 years prior to that after finishing residency/fellowship. I was a D1 athlete in a sport (tennis) that didn’t require a lot of weight training at the time, but I still lifted because we had access to the athletes’ weight room and trainers. But I have more muscle bulk now than I did in college.

                            I follow a Push/Pull/Legs routine, but my main goal at this point is to avoid injury. I’ve had a couple of minor injuries from lifting over the last 7 years (all more than 3 years ago) that really set me back, so I’ve modified some of my goals for adding weight to my lifts and take a very moderate approach. I lift at least 5 times per week, sometimes 6. I don’t have a good squat rack yet, so the legs portion of my routine isn’t as robust as the Push and Pull parts. So if anyone has a good suggestion on a squat rack of some sort I’m all ears.

                            I also try and run 2-3 times per week, and have started playing tennis with my oldest daughter who has shown an interest, so hopefully that’s enough cardio. I hate running and don’t mind or even kind of enjoy weight lifting though, so it’s easier for me to stay motivated.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by burritos View Post
                              I apologize for talking up IF. It definitely can be annoying zealotry. Most my friends tune me out when I spout off about it. As a beneficial side effect, it motivates patients to politely end the appointment faster when I attempt to deep dive it with them. So if you're annoyed by IF, it's not you.
                              Definitely not annoyed by it, as you know i have reasons IF is useful to me and i do use it from time to time - even my non IF usual routine is IF influenced, i only have one small meal in my sixteen hours which is a huge cry from the constant grazing i used to do all morning long.

                              However I found IF incompatible with strength straining and the weight gain necessary to support it. Which raises the question, is all this strength training and weight gain good for us, or not? Even barring injury - which could happen doing cardio or sports, too - does packing on even mostly muscle mass have a metabolic cost? It's hard to find useful data on longevity in bodybuilders because so many of them used anabolic steroids or weird supplements for many years.

                              I certainly don't buy Mark Rippetoe's advice to "not worry about seeing your abs," which may be good advice for a powerlifter and makes for faster strength gains as a bodybuilder but surely can't be worth the metabolic cost in the long run. My fear of getting fat plus naturally being a hard gainer are why my progress is much slower than some, but I've kept my BF in the 12-15% range which i think is healthier in the long run than getting up to 20%.

                              One reason I'm so fastidious about deadlifts is that i have nearly complete disc loss at L4-L5. That started in my mid 20s and i was talking to a spine surgeon in my late 30s. Then i discovered deadlifts. That plus every other year RFA has decreased my back pain 80%. If I go even 3 weeks without DLs, my pain starts to come back. Having a strong back has been miraculous for my back pain.

                              Conversely i have to be careful with squats, if I go too heavy or too frequently i pay the price. Right now my sets twice a week are at 205 and my hips and legs are ready to increase weight but my back is saying no. So I'll deviate from Starting Strength, again, and just go up in reps till I get more like 8-10 at this weight, and reassess.

                              I also think the squats and deadlifts are really important for injury prevention playing soccer and skiing.

                              This is my routine:

                              Sunday: pullups or chinups, bodyweight (50+) or weighted (3*6-8) which i alternate every workout; bench or press (3*6); row (3*6-8)

                              Monday: squat (3*6-10) and deadlift (1*5 plus warmups)

                              Tuesday: alternate from Sunday, no row
                              Thursday: squat and cleans (3*6)

                              Friday: same as Sunday

                              Sunday: same as Tuesday and so on

                              ​​​​​​I am running about 25 miles a week, one long slow Maffetone run on Saturday, one middle distance speed workout on Wednesday, and two easy 4 mile runs Monday and Thursday. So twice a week I both run and lift, try to run in the morning and lift in the evening.

                              ​​​​​​i really need to add some flexibility and be more consistent with my core work. If anyone has a good flexibility routine to share I'd love to see it, that is absolutely my greatest deficiency but i haven't found something i enjoy (and my back does not like yoga).

                              I'm 47 and everyone keeps saying by 50 both strength and speed start to noticeably decrease, so this may be close to as good as it gets...