My name is John Pangan. I’m a former IT Geek turned Fitness geek. In 2000, I suffered empyema – fluids in the lungs. I needed surgery to put a chest tube on my back to help me breathe. At age of 41, I joined a natural bodybuilding show and won.
Entering my 40th year, I just recently broke up from a long-term relationship, un-happy with my career in IT and I didn’t want to admit but I was in a mid-life crisis.
Fitness was always a big part of my life. That was a constant whether I was happy or sad. I was in decent shape but not in phenomenal shape. Instead of buying a sports car like most 40 year olds, I focused on my health and fitness.
I always wanted to compete in a bodybuilding competition but was not sure if I could gain muscle after 40 and torch fat. Behold to my surprise, I was able to do it. Can you believe I am stronger and in better shape in my 40’s than in my 20’s. How is that possible? By applying these 7 principles, you can gain muscles and torch fat in 90 days. No matter what age you are at. It just takes motivation and consistency.
1. Are you down with DUP? (Daily Undulating Periodization) Periodize your weight training.
First off, let’s talk about muscle protein synthesis. MPS for short, it is the uptake of protein, growth and rebuilding phase in muscles. To get bigger and build muscles (hypertrophy), you want to peak the MPS as often as possible. MPS increases drastically from 4 hrs post workout to 24 hrs, then it tails off after 36 hrs. If a person only trains a specific body part once a week, then he/she is not maximizing the MPS peak. You need to keep it anabolic. Thereby you need to increase the frequency of your training. If you want to develop more muscles on your legs, then you need to train more than once a week. Just like a marathoner, to get a better time, a runner runs everyday till the day of the race.
2. Don’t be afraid to lift heavy! Lifting heavy is relative. I don’t mean that you should lift up the heaviest possible dumb bell in the gym. You’re only going to hurt yourself. But progressive overload must occur in order for the muscles to grow and get stronger. If you do the same amount of weight and the same amount of reps every workout, you won’t gain muscles. Your body will never change. An EFFORT has to occur. The body needs to lift more than what is accustomed to. More weight means more muscles! More muscles means less fat!
3. Stimulate the muscles! Do not annihilate. There has to be a mind and body connection. When training a specific body part, it’s necessary to focus on contracting or squeezing that muscle. You want to experience what the bodybuilders called “The Pump”. Actually, the technical term is called Hyperemia, an increase blood flow to a specific muscle tissue.
3. Deload: take a Recovery Period. It’s necessary to recover from weight training. I suggest a week in which you ease up and lift only 1/2 the intensity of your weight training work load.
4. Roll it out (foam roll) and stretch it out (stretching and mobility). You are not that young. Protect yourself from injuries by foam rolling and stretching after or during your workout.
5. Warm up! Take time and not rush it. Start with a warm up set before rushing into your training set.
6. Diet is above all the determining factor in fat loss and gaining muscles. Not weight training or endless amount of cardio. Track your calories and macronutrients/micronutrients. It’s necessary to figure out how much calories (Basal Metabolic Rate) your taking in. In order to gain muscles and torch fat, you need the proper amount of macronutrients (protein, carbs and fat) along with your micronutrients. Use a food scale and a calorie counting app to track down your food intake.
To determine your basal metabolic rate (BMR), aka how many calories your body burns at rest, use this simple formula:
THE RULE OF TEN (OR ELEVEN):
BMR= 10 calories/pound of bodyweight for women
BMR= 11 calories/pound of bodyweight for men
Example: If you weigh 200 lbs your BMR is 2,200 calories.