Am I too old to work out?
Hello - This post covers a few different areas and didn't know where to post it so I started here.
I am 59 years old, and started a healthy way of eating back in June, 2011. My original goal was to lose 30 pounds and I have accomplished that, but now I continue to lose weight. I went on a high protein, low-carb diet, and I use 100% whey protein shakes along with working out on the Total Gym. I went from 165 pounds to 135 pounds in 3 months, but did it by eating right, not really dieting.
I feel great, but my friends tell me I lost too much weight and look sick. What I want to know is, now that I have started to drop below my 135 goal, how do I get back up to 135 but not put the weight all back on my gut? I cannot do conventional situps because I have an abdominal hernia. I can do situps on an inclined bench with knees bent.
An example of what I eat during a normal day is, Breakfast: 2 cups of coffee with 2% milk, bowl of bran flakes with uncooked oatmeal, yogurt and an apple for a snack. Lunch: I eat a sandwich on whole grain bread. Tuna, turkey or egg salad. Afternoon snack is same as morning. For dinner I have either beef, pork, chicken with a salad and a veggie like spinach. If I get hungry before bed I may have more yogurt and sometimes some cookies to satisfy a sweet tooth. I still don't eat "bad" carbs like potatoes, corn, etc., and I don't use sugar or eat high fats because I had high cholesterol at one point.
I guess my main question here is, am I too old to work out heavier than just the total gym? I don't mind increasing my weight a bit if it goes in the right places. Am I eating right? Oh - The 100% whey protein contains creatine and I drink that AFTER workouts.
Please help me get back in shape. I am only 5'4", so that is why my weight is where it is.
Hey Joe... no one is ever too old to workout, but you may have to watch out for a few more things than a younger person in order to avoid injury. Without knowing what your workout routine is (what exercises, how many sets, reps, how much weight, etc.) I would say that in order to gain wait, you simply need to eat more every day. Can you give us a bit more detail about your workouts? How many days per week, what exercises you do, etc.
The hernia could be a problem, but no, you're not too old to work out. If you can, do a couple leg exercises (eg squats, dedlifts, lunges), a couple pushing exercises (eg bench press, overhead press, dips) and a couple of pulling exercises (eg pull ups, DB rows, T-bar rows). What you can do safely and without pain will depend on how the hernia affects your movement patterns, your flexibility, your balance, and your confidence. If you don't already know what you can and can't do (outside of sit ups vs crunches, both of which are relatively insignificant exercises, honestly), then it would be wise to consult with a sports physiotherapist before committing to a program.
Once you've get a basic strength program down, just make sure you're eating enough calories to gain a little bit of weight each week (up to 1lb increase/wk) and you'll be on your way. To gain ~500g/lb bodyweight in a week, you should be consuming 500kcal/day above and beyond what you need to maintain your weight. Since you're continuing to lose weight (according to the original post), I'll assume you're in a calorie deficit (ie you're consuming less calories than your body is using each day). Refer to the following as a reference for your current predicted calorie deficit, based on how much weight you've lost in the last month:
- 1lb/month: 125kcal/day
- 2lb/month: 250kcal/day
- 3lb/month: 375kcal/day
- 4lb/month: 500kcal/day
To stop losing weight, you need to add back in whatever that deficit is. So, if you've lost 4lb in the last 4 weeks, you need to increase your daily calorie intake by 500kcal. If you've only lost 1lb in the last 4 weeks, you only need to increase your daily calorie intake by 125kcal.
To start gaining weight again, you need to add in a calorie surplus of ~250-500kcal/day on top of that. Try not to go above that amount, or you will be gaining fat at a more rapid rate than you gain muscle. Inevitably, you will gain some fat with your muscle mass, so it's best just to accept that fact, but so long as you are in fact gaining a decent amount of muscle, that's okay. If you gain 1lb fat for every 1lb muscle, then once you've gained 15lb back, you can lose another 5-7.5lb fat (keep up your strength training when you do this, so that you maintain the muscle mass that you've built up) and break even with about the same amount of fat you started with, but more muscle.
Ryan - D.Fitness. SQ 2x150kg - BP 95kg - DL 190kg - OHP 60kg
First I will start off saying that I spoke to my Dr., and he actually told me a healthy weight for me is between 127 and 132??? I guess that means if I don't want any muscle? I am sure if I went up to let's say, 140, and it was all muscle, that would be fine? Anyway, I workout Monday Wednesday and Friday and I have some weights and the total gym. I use only 50 pounds to do bench presses, 40 pounds for curls, and 60 pounds for regular presses and deep knee bends. I do 3 sets of 10 of each. On the total gym I do mostly situps on an incline to take pressure off the hernia. I also do obliques. Situps are about 100 a day, 3 days a week, and the obliques I do 3 sets of 15. The total gym uses your own body weight as weights depending on how high you have the bench set. I think I am doing OK, but not sure about low carbs and using the protein shake with creatine??? Any suggestions after reading this???
Originally Posted by PLBFitness
Thanks Goldfish - Read above post. I didn't want to duplicate my response that I sent to the Admin, but I have added back some carbs, but not "bad" carbs like potatoes, only whole grain stuff.
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