One of the many changes (and challenges) that comes with growing older is the loss of lean muscle mass. According to Harvard Health Publishing, once you hit 30 years of age, you start to lose 3% to 5% of your muscle mass every decade. The majority of men will part with around 30% throughout their lives. That’s why it’s crucial to do everything in your power to stay active, in addition to maintaining and building muscle mass. To help you out, we’ve put together a productive strength workout to regain muscle mass as you age.
An incredibly important habit to adopt is strength training at least two to three times a week. Doing so will help improve your muscle mass and keep you fit. Regarding exercise selection, compound movements that target multiple muscle groups simultaneously are the name of the game. Training a few fundamental patterns—squat, hinge, push, pull, and lunge—should be at the top of your mind.
So without further delay, let’s get into the #1 workout to regain muscle mass as you age. Perform 3 to 4 sets of the following exercises.
Start your Trap Bar Deadlifts by standing in the center of the trap bar with your feet shoulder-width distance apart and your toes pointed straight. Keep your chest tall and your core tight, push your hips back, and squat down until you’re able to grab the handles. Lift the bar by driving through your heels, flexing your quads and glutes at the top to finish. Push your hips back, and squat down until the weights touch the ground before performing another rep. Complete 3 to 4 sets of 8 to 10 reps.
Note: If you don’t have a trap bar readily accessible, you can perform this exercise as a Kettlebell Deadlift or with two dumbbells out to your sides.
Begin this next exercise by planting your arm on a workout bench with your chest tall and your core tight. With your other arm holding a dumbbell, drive it back towards your body with your elbow flared out. Squeeze your upper back and rear delt hard at the top of the movement, then resist on the way down. Get a solid stretch at the bottom before performing another rep. Complete 3 to 4 sets of 10 reps for each arm.
Start your Flat Dumbbell Bench Press by sitting down on a workout bench with a pair of dumbbells. Lie back and press the weights up. Then, evenly lower the dumbbells with your elbows slightly tucked. Come down enough to where you get a solid chest stretch in before pressing the dumbbells back up, flexing your pecs and triceps to finish. Complete 3 to 4 sets of 8 to 10 reps.
Begin the Front Foot Elevated Split Squat by placing your working leg on top of a plate or elevated surface. Keep your chest tall, and come down slowly until your back knee touches the floor. Get a solid stretch in the hips of your back leg, then drive through your front heel, flexing your quad and glutes to finish. Perform 3 to 4 sets of 10 reps on one side before switching over to the other.
This final exercise will have you lying down on the leg curl machine with your chest and hips pressed against the pad. Begin dragging your heels towards your body, flexing your hamstrings hard to finish. Lower the weight with control, maintaining tension in your hamstrings until your legs are fully extended before performing another rep. Complete 3 to 4 sets of 10 reps.
Tim Liu, C.S.C.S.