We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
There are no set strength or endurance goals that fit everybody. Reasonable strength goals for general fitness - not for great power - vary by body type, neuro-muscular constitution, age, sex, talent, etc.
I know a gal, much younger than me, who can deadlift 300 comfortably. She is a school teacher.
My trainer and I, after 18 months, have decided that realistic goals for me are to bench my body weight (which is 165 lbs now - up ten lbs of muscle and sinew in the past 8 months as my boss predicted and required, while my waist is down to where it was 15 years ago - from 37" to 35"), barbell squat my body weight a few times, deadlift 200 a few times, and do maybe 5 pull-ups. Have you done a pull-up lately? I remember when I could do ten or more. Never again, for certain. I can not do military press, alas, due to shoulder damage.
That is realistic, not ambitious and I am certain many readers are much stronger. After reaching those strength goals, it will be mostly about maintaining, preventing decay and deterioration. Sure, I'd like to be stronger, but I wouldn't mind being taller, more handsome, and smarter too. Regarding endurancegoals - that's a different topic.
So yes, those are relatively modest goals for many but I have an ectomorphic runner's build, some grey hair, and I am about fitness and conditioning anyway, not body-building.
How are our friends doing with their efforts? Do you have goals? Goals are necessary in every endeavor, I feel.
I'm 62 and I have similar goals. Maintain general fitness and movement so that I can camp and fish and hunt until I don't want to do those things anymore.
I do a bootcamp type workout with a group two or three times a week. The youngsters in the group make it fun and they motivate me.
I have also lifted weights off and on over the last 4 years. Just started again after a 5 month layoff. My current goal for that - 700 lb. total on squat, deadlift and bench press. 275 to 300 on the deadlift is doable - I have been there before. Hoping for 225 on the squat and 200 on the bench.
Thank you for your posts on this subject, Bird Dog. They motivate me and keep me going to the gym. Even though I am the oldest guy in the room.
Haven't been able to ride the bike as much as I want last couple years so the pants are tight. I have a defensive end's build - gone totally to seed. Played contact sports for many years, used to lift a lot including 20 years of power. Just fat now, a half year short of my 50th trip round the ol' Sun. Close to three bills, natural weight when I'm in shape is about 225 (at 6 feet, plus or minus a hair). I have always looked like God messed up the vertical aspect ratio - human, but too wide by a third.
Got back into the gym last week. Was thinking about pretty boy lifting plus cardio, but decided to go Full Rippetoe, well sort of, and just stuck in the Meathead portion of the gym. 4x10 bench, squat and deadlift with 145, 4x10 presses (much lighter, about 110lbs), and some standing rows to stretch my sketchy upper back. After a month or two I will add back the clean & press, which is the single biggest bang for the buck for day-to-day strength. But sooooo taxing.
How is it going? Great, really. After three sessions (each separated by 4 days) I feel like I've been stabbed in the legs but it gets easier each time. The increased range of mobility and balance is awesome. My hips are so much looser and my lower back, where a previously ruptured disc lives, is looser too. I'm already walking more straight up, and my stride is getting longer again. It feels right.
Going to still ride the bike lots, particularly in good weather. But I gotta trade 20 lbs of fat for 20 lbs of muscle over the winter (easy for somebody with my endomorphic build) and that 20 lbs of muscle, just by existing, will eat 40 pounds of fat over the next year, more if I watch the diet some. To the extent there's numbers goals... get my bench, squats and deadlift up to 4x10 at 225 (the squats will be easy) and my clean and press up to 185. And then keep it up indefinitely and become a grizzled old guy that terrifies young punks. ;-) I am accepting that it's time to stop screwing around, it matters now.
I appreciate your posts Bird Dog. Some of the stuff I know, some I don't, but the inspiration of you doing it every day was one of two or three separate things sorta kicking me in the ass and encouraging me to get back after it. Thank you.
Based on your weight and waist size stats, IMO you are focusing too much on raw strength and not enough on muscle endurance and trimming fat. Your weight lifting goals are perfectly fine, but if you are 165 lbs and have a 35 inch waist you need to cut belly fat.
By all means reach your strength goal. At that point I would suggest you transition to a more cross-fit style workout and increase your cardio. When lifting, 8-12 reps to exhaustion per set. Work opposing muscle groups successively. No rest. Cardio intervals between circuits. Keep your heart rate up the entire workout.
Mind your diet, cut carbs, and buy a scale that measures body fat.
I have lifted on and off since my late teens, I am now 58. I did karate/kick boxing in my early 20s. I lift 3 times a week and 3 days a week I do heavy bag work, jump rope and some calisthenics. Due to previous muscle injuries, lat and trapezius, some of my lifting is limited. My work set numbers are, deadlifting around 260, I was up to 330 a couple years ago but due to muscle problems I had to back off for a few months. Squats are 190 and bench 180. All work is 3 sets of 5. I was able to bulk up some by consuming a lot of protein. I have reverted back to the way I have eaten most of my adult life, which I didn't realize until recently is a diet trend. I don't eat breakfast, I eat around 10 and then have supper around 4. No snacking in the evening. This is the way I have naturally eaten most of my life, now it is called intermittent fasting. I am down 12 lbs. in a couple months. I feel better when I am a lighter weight. I am 6ft. and currently 200 lb.