I hear your frustration as I have it too. But I don't let it stop me from working on building serious muscles. I use the frustration in my weight lifting classes to build those muscles.
Fitness Minutes: (53,358)
820 1/7/13 1:41 P
Thanks everyone for your input. It is really appreciated, particularly since I was feeling really discouraged.
Fitness Minutes: (220,235)
21,513 1/7/13 12:44 P
A person is never too old to improve their overall physical fitness. Tufts University did a landmark study on strength training in older populations. It found that older people can increase lean muscle with a good strength training program. It's takes time, but it is possible.
This website has a lot of good information about strength training and nutrition for older people.
Honestly, in that case, I think I'd pick one or the other to focus on. Sitck ot a deficit, but make sure to lift heavy, for the next 3-4 months and see where your body fat is at them. Then focus on building muscle, which will bring some fat. Then, you can try to lose some fat again. It's sort of a trial and error, can be never ending process. Bodybuilders go through it. They "bulk" for 6-8 months, then cut, to get rid of the extra fat, then go back to the bulk, etc. I did a really, really dirty bulk over the holidays. ;) I knew I'd eat like crap, despite my best efforts not to, so I lifted hard and heavy. I can feel a difference, especially in my legs and arms, although the size (obviously) isn't there. Now, I'm back to eating at a deficit, because I feel like crap after eating crap, and I did gain some fat. I'm still lifting heavy, and feeling great.
Fitness Minutes: (53,358)
820 1/7/13 8:23 A
My BMI is a healthy/normal range. However, my fat percentage is on the high end of normal for my age. I want to lose a few pounds and gain muscle to lower the body fat percentage.
Fitness Minutes: (35,078)
5,088 1/7/13 8:18 A
Don't be discouraged! I, too, am jealous that men can gain muscle and lose weight at a much faster rate, but there's nothing us women can do about it. No need to fret over something you can't change. Keep doing what you're doing.
Men have testosterone, which enables them to gain more muscle. Women have far less testosterone, which is why we don't get huge like men can when we lift. The bodybuilding females you see with significant muscle development are probably supplementing with substances I don't even want to think about! Many figure competitors, or bikini competitors are able to achieve a nice balanced feminine physique with lovely muscle without that all that stuff.
Here is the key. While is it possible to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time, it's hard to do and can be less than optimal. When I'm trying to cut bodyfat, the best I hope for is the retention of my lean weight weight or maybe a very slight increase, with a decrease in bodyfat. If your primary goal is to add some significant muscle to your frame, then you have to feed it's growth by eating at least your maintenance calories or maybe a bit more. Don't be afraid to pick up heavy weights, but remember progression and form are the most important thing.
Don't be discouraged because of your age. My gym has a 60 year old bodybuilding male and also a female figure competitor! When I grow up I want to be just like them!
Let me start by saying that I'm 57. So in a way, I feel your pain. But men can gain that extra muscle because of testosterone. And testosterone also makes men hairy all over the place (I certainly don't want THAT!) and can make them do stupid stuff (think road rage or some other act of aggression; I don't want THAT either) and I also am convinced it's the reason why most men can't find the catsup in the refrigerator. JMO, no need for any men to flame me here. I'm married to a man and have 2 sons who are now grown men.
The thing is, over the course of a year, 1 pound a month equals 12 pounds of muscle. Combined with weight loss (less fat) it will really make a difference, and show. Being upset because I can't gain muscle as fast as a man can, is really silly to me-- it would be like, being upset because I'm tall. It's something I can't change; therefore it behooves me to make sure I stick to the strength training, and get the maximum result I can.
The muscle you do have will show once you shed fat. It seems, from your ticker, that weight loss is your goal, although you have very little to lose. It is very hard, and a very slow process, to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time. Google "lean gains". You can eat around maintenance and lift heavy and slowly, slowly, slowly build muscle while also burning fat, but it is a hard, long progress. You will not end up with huge muscles over night, or even in a year, man or woman. Even on a true "bulk" it isn't easy to put on a ton of muscle, and that gain typically comes with some fat gain as well. Just hang in there, and you'll notice and feel a difference.
Fitness Minutes: (53,358)
820 1/7/13 7:57 A
I just read a discouraging article on muscle gain. Essentially, the article said that men 'can' gain an average of 1.5 to 4 pounds of muscle per month, while a woman gains muscle at a much slower rate. Additionally, the article says that other conditions play a factor in the amount of muscle folks will gain, one of which is age.
My discouragement is that I'm 63 years old and even if I'm fortunate enough to gain 1 pound of muscle per month, that 1 pound is not going to show up when it's distributed over the body. I was hoping to gain enough muscle for it to show.
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