Steve Maxwell Article : Dear Over-45 Trainee

Jak Nieuwenhuis

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
Maxwell is certainly eccentric and a very creative trainer as well

I think the folks at Strongfirst generally go against the idea of "grading on a curve" for basis of things like age and that is why this article is receiving conflicting opinions


Double-Digit Post Count
Personally I found Steve's article useful, especially the part where he put focus on intensity of effort, rather lifting a certain weight. That's kind of what I'm doing now as an older guy coming back from injury, focusing on an appropriate level of effort such that I don't get injured again, and only going up in weight when everything is 100%.

North Coast Miller

More than 2500 posts
Is this the one where he talks about his "guy" who basically tells him what to do based on the position of the stars or whatever?
I was like WTF?!?! when I watched this.
At the same time though he still gives great advice. I don't know if it's this JRE episode or another one, but I remember Maxwell talking about hanging as remedy for shoulder pain, which is awesome advice.
He's a wealth of info when it comes to rehab and correctives. Also on how to make simple, effective programs esp for group fitness.

I paid to have my kettlebell 1.0 cert through him, but when I found he was close enough to drive, I went mostly to train with him for a day - well worth it.

He recall he mentioned hangs and the research behind it. And of course talked about everything from Crossfit to Systema.

H. Mac

Double-Digit Post Count
Steve Maxwell’s article is excellent. However, it may have been wiser to either identify the source of the genetic information that he relies on (6th para. “[V]ery few people have the genetic propensity. . .”.; and 9th para. “While most men do not have the genetic ability . . .”) or to omit it.

I’m fortunate. I’ve been working out since my teens, but at age 64, I’m stronger than ever, and my greatest gains came after age 50.

The real good news is that my doctor tells me that I’m as healthy as a horse.

On the other hand, my wife tells me that I’m almost as smart as one! ;)


Triple-Digit Post Count
I love Steve’s work and increasingly look to the work of people like him, Clarence Bass and Richard Winnett who have all trained for years and are still training (and look the part). I hope to do the same.

All have different approaches but have found what works for them (and what they are motivated to do).

I didn’t find the post negative but it is a perspective from someone that has been in the trenches for years. However, I am a mid-40s trainee who has made some progress in lifts that have been in my routine for a long time (chins, dips) recently so my hope is, I continue to do so.

Great thread.


Triple-Digit Post Count
Clarence is a great example of what is possible and none of what he does is extreme. In fact, his approach to training and diet is refreshingly simple. Simple, but definitely not easy otherwise there’d be more ‘ripped’ trainees in their 80s! ;)

When it comes to aging and training I have to keep coming back to my man Clarence Bass. While he is definitely showing signs of aging in his muscle tone and presumably other aspects of his metabolism, the guy is a beast, and has been for years.

He might be an aberration but if so I suspect it is his capacity for and ability to manage high intensity protocols, and not anything to do with genetics.

Peak Shape - at 60

==As detailed in The Lean Advantage 3, Lovelace Foundation for Medical Education and Research in Albuquerque, New Mexico, measured my maximum heart rate for the first time in 1977, when I was a few months short of 40. It was 180, exactly in accordance with the standard formula (220 - 40 = 180). Interestingly, that was a few years after I began doing regular high-intensity aerobics.

Since then, my maximum heart rate has been measured in a laboratory setting seven times -- at ages 44, 47, 50, 51, 55, 60 and 62 – and has consistently exceeded the predicted rate by an ever widening margin. In June of this year, the Cooper Clinic in Dallas recorded my maximum heart rate at 182. Confounding the formula, my maximum heart rate has remained 180 or higher for 22 years. Why have I been able to defy the rule? Am I an aberration?==


==Evans and Rosenberg and their colleagues at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Human Nutrition Center on Aging at Tufts University have found that "the muscles of elderly people are just as responsive to weight training as those of younger people." Startlingly, an 8-week program of strength training by 87- to 96-year-old women confined to a nursing home resulted in a tripling of strength and a muscle-size increase of ten percent.==


More than 300 posts
Going into reading, you need to understand, Steve's a card or 2 short of a full deck. But he makes sense.

I read this article and subconsciously was nodding my head.

Maxing out your muscle, check
20-30 minute workouts, check
Maintenance, check.

I just turned 50 and am nowhere near as strong as I was 6 or 7 years ago. I used to press double 70's for 3-4 reps no sweat, 5 ladders. Even for 7 once. I'd be lucky to get it twice now.

Snatching a 55 feels really heavy now. I tested the 45, did 100 reps in 4:45. That's my new snatch bell.

Loved EDT. EDT is like 3 scotches. It doesn't love me back anymore.

Want to play basketball, hip pointer starts acting up, 200 yards into any type of running. Effects golf swing. I'd rather golf.

Loved playing baseball, had a really good arm until about age 46. I remember playing catch and heaving the ball like Peyton Manning at the end of the road. Could get it there, but with zero zip.

The mind knows what it wants to do, The body doesn't want to cooperate.
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