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Age and ability to build muscle mass?

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    Age and ability to build muscle mass?

    Is there an age at which one's ability to add muscle mass begins to decrease?

    Is it easier to add muscle during the late teens to early twenties than to add during the thirties?


    TapRackBang
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    I would say yes, hormonal levels go down but some insist maturity is important. I think the maturity thing has to do more with the mind. Somewhere around 25-30 years old most peoples hormonal levels start to decline.

    When I was in high school I could put 5-10 pounds a week on my bench for awhile, I dont know about weight though much other than I was between 150-205 or so during my 4 years in HS.

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    I'm 44 and have made more gains now then I did when I was younger .. I think that its that I am working out smarter now than when I first started back in the day .. I did make gains faster back then for sure, but I never stuck with it .. so, I do think you make more gains when ur younger but you can make gains no matter what age you are !

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    Age, Muscle Mass

    I am 43 y/o and like the previous poster I am building more mass than when I was 23 and didn't know what I was doing (over-training, not pushing myself, eating wrong, etc.).

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    I am 47 and am much stronger than I was at any earlier age by up to 150% in some areas. It is important to realize that strength is not necessarily synonymous with mass though. It can be, but not always. For example, you can get huge strength increases simply by developing better neurological focus or control over the same exact fiber you currently have through low weight high rep training. This is literally “training” and developing coordination and the ability to recruit all your fiber as needed. Thus said, at older ages size increases will not probably be as fast as when you had optimum/maximal hormonal levels as you did when you are younger. However, with age there is typically more experience and a maturity factor that may overcome the reduced hormonal levels. But there is such a wide range of “normal” testosterone levels (and other things like IGF-1 and GH) in males that there is still plenty of potential for growth late in life – just not as optimal as when you were younger. In my particular case I was able to put on 16 lbs of lean mass in 5 months all while losing 54 lbs of body fat at my age. So I personally know it can be done. Frankly I think genetics plays the bigger part in how much lean tissue the body will “permit” you to add to your frame without an exponentially higher amount of effort and caloric intake given reasonable hormone levels (at any age). This is why a lot of us are watching closely for "genuine" breakthroughs in things like myostatin inhibitors.
    Last edited by OceanDude; 07-31-2003 at 03:55 PM.
    "Doc, If I had known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself..."

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    There are 173 pound guys benching over 600, so yeah size and strength are not one and the same.

    I agree with the maturity post above, being young and stupid wont fix everything, being older and wiser helps.

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    Its easier to gain muscle mass when you are older in your late 30’s most pro’s don’t really reach their potential till their late 30’s look at Ronnie, Yates, and the likes. I am 39 and I am in better shape then when I was in my teens and early twenties. I think you start to lose size (and not much either) and mass when you reach your late 40’s., Bodybuilding is the only sport (if you consider it a sport) that you get better with age. Unlike Baseball, Basketball, Football, Boxing etc where you start losing flexibility, reflexes, speed and the likes. Bodybuilding on the other hand is about strength, muscle maturity, mass and the older you get the stronger and bigger you become.

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    I wouldn't say easier, but it takes time, those guy are lucky to gain 5 quality pounds a year at the level they are at. Look at Jay Cutler, he hasn't gotten much bigger than he was at 22 years old.

    If you want to see an old guy with tons of mass, look up Albert Beckles, tell me thats natural and I will laugh.

    IIRC he should have been around 62 in these pictures.
    http://www.darkwoods.net/bodybuilder.../beckle01.html

    http://www.bodybuilders.com/albert.htm

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    Good to hear from those of you who have "done it" and are still doing it at your ages.

    I'm 33 and just starting (kicking myself for not having started sooner in life), but I'm hoping to make the kinds of gains you guys have.

    TapRackBang
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    Originally posted by Mudge
    There are 173 pound guys benching over 600, so yeah size and strength are not one and the same.
    Fuck, I wish I could bench 600 when I weighed 173.

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    Gifted, short powerlifters who keep themselves down in weight, they probably have Grandpas legs too - and thats going to be with a shirt. The only guys I know of in the 700s though currently are all heavy.

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    Bill Pearl, a five time Mr. Olympia at 42 years of age had 21" arms and weighed 240+ pounds with a competition figure. You just have to want it more as you get older, it's definitely possible though.

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    I just Googled, "What is the best age to gain muscle mass?" and this was the top site. I'm glad too! The reason why I am looking is because I am 30 years old and I am afraid that this is the time that muscle starts to deteriorate. I have worked out a little here and a little there throughout the years but now that i'm getting older fitness seems to be becoming more important to me. This site helped a lot and answered most of my questions.
    I'm curious to know if anybody has any helpful hints for a 30 year old guy that will help me to make fast and large gains. I am open to anything really so please feel free to throw anything my way!! Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mind over Matter View Post
    I just Googled, "What is the best age to gain muscle mass?" and this was the top site. I'm glad too! The reason why I am looking is because I am 30 years old and I am afraid that this is the time that muscle starts to deteriorate. I have worked out a little here and a little there throughout the years but now that i'm getting older fitness seems to be becoming more important to me. This site helped a lot and answered most of my questions.
    I'm curious to know if anybody has any helpful hints for a 30 year old guy that will help me to make fast and large gains. I am open to anything really so please feel free to throw anything my way!! Thanks
    I think the only real issue at age 30 is that your hGH production is at less than optimal levels. If you did absolutely nothing I suppose you'd see deterioriation, but FWIW I started BB competition at age 35. Just because you're 30 doesn't mean you're dead yet. You should probably be only slightly less optimal than you were in your 20s. Personally and amongs BB friends I've observed more general wear & tear starting to become an issue around age 40.

    I think the best thing you can do now, if you've only been spotty in your past in terms of lifting and clean eating, is to get a solid fitness lifestyle established. This will remain the foundation for continued growth and reduced deterioriation going forward. The body responds better to consistency and predictabilty, with some consideration to periodization to enable continued but cyclic growth / recovery phases. Don't get too hung up on "trying to catch up" - you could conceivably just hurt yourself by trying to get somewhere that will come w/ time vs some sort of crazy jumpstart you're looking for.


    All posts are for entertainment. Consult a doctor before using any medication.

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    And build a solid foundation with light compounds and progress from there.

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