Staying Healthy and Fit Over 50
Age is indeed only a number and we can lower that number by exercising and living healthy. Please join and add any helpful information so that we may all benefit from it.
Building a great chest when you’re over fifty takes some planning and ingenuity. As we age our bodies are more prone to injury which makes it difficult to lift heavy enough to develop our chest. One way in building a great chest over fifty is to tweak our pec workout by substituting or combining free weights with different types of gym equipment.
Cables and Machines versus Free Weights
Although free weights are the best form of lifting and building muscle it is not the safest. If you are over fifty, cables and machines stability will lessen the chance of injury especially when lifting heavy.
Gyms have various types of equipment and brand names that will be similar to ones mentioned. Among the chest building favorites is the Smith Machine. Smith Machine mimics free weight barbell flat, incline and decline bench press. Smith Machine has cables on both sides for added safety and allows you to re-rack the weight where it is easily visible without needing a spotter. Other good examples of plate loading and cable equipment use to build a great chest are Hammer Strength, which can be used for flat, decline and incline presses, Universal, Pro Fitness, Maximus, Flex, LifeFitness, Nautilus, Power Strength, Body Solid, and FreeMotion.
The Chest Workout
Perform the chest workout once a week.
- The Smith Machine or various types of Hammer Strength equipment can be use for incline, decline and flat bench presses.
- Warm up with light weight. Reps should be 15 to 20 first warm up set, 12 to 15 the second.
- Start out with the incline press while you are the strongest, so that the upper chest can receive the greatest impact, then on to flat press to work the overall chest.
- With your hands shoulder width apart complete 4 sets each with 8 to 10 reps. and 1 to 11/2 minutes rest between sets, then go to the Hammer Strength chest cable machine and complete 2 more sets each of incline and flat presses with 8 to 10 reps each.
- Finish off with Pectoral Fly Machine or cables for 3 sets of flies with 10 to 12 reps.
- All reps should be done to muscle failure.
By now your chest has a total of 15 sets and should be really burning.
Strategy behind Building a Great Chest
This Chest workout can be done indefinitely with using different weight variations, order of sets and incorporating free weights and other equipment. Examples would be to change the weight load, except for flies, where you only complete 4 to 6 reps. or start out with a flat bench press first and then incline press. Just be smart about it; keep your mind active and muscles guessing by thinking up different variations for your routine.
Don’t let televisions, music, people and especially your cell phone distract you. Remember why you are at the gym! Bring your own music and headphones. Play upbeat music loud enough to drown out other sounds and distractions around you. Also don’t worry about how much weight that the person next to you is using, concentrate on your goals and gains.
Bottom Line on Building a Great Chest
It’s not so much about the weight and equipment used as it is about the form and consistency. Put in the effort a you’ll be amazed in how you are still able to build a great chest when you’re over fifty and doing it with less chance of injury.