Build Your Strength Foundation

You need a strength foundation.  You have to progressively weight train with enough intensity to be strong.

This baseline strength or foundational strength will allow you to do with weights what you want.  Whether you want to keep progressing and compete in strength events, or get stronger for your sport, or develop massive muscular bodybuilder size or just enjoy being big and strong and able to do more for yourself.

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Strength first. 

Don't worry about losing weight or the size of your muscles at first.

Your muscles will get larger, denser and harder the stronger you get.

Your belly will get flatter and you will lose body fat the stronger you get...if you control the amount and type of food you eat.

But you need strength.  Weakness is no good in men.  You have to be strong.  Not just for vanity, although that is important. Strong, muscular men look better than weak men without muscles.

Get strong for your health.  So you can do for yourself.  So you can defend yourself.  So people leave you alone.  So people respect you.  So you are not a burden.  So you can care for yourself when you are sick and get old.

Strength is critical to the quality of your life.

If you just look at older men without any strength you will see what I mean.

Everything is difficult for them.  Everything takes an incredible amount of time if they can do it at all.  Most things that a younger person takes for granted, a weak old man cannot do.

Do you want that for your life?

I thought not.

Strength Foundation Basics

How strong do you need to get?

It depends. 

You do not really need to get as strong as you think.  You start by getting a bit stronger than you are now.

Don't worry about getting as strong as the guys on YouTube or in the magazines.  Those guys make a living out of weight training and are quite strong and have the assistance of pharmaceuticals.  Since you and I make a living outside of the gym, we have other priorities to handle too.

So you would not expect to get as strong as them or develop that level of muscularity.

So it makes no sense to worry about their strength and muscles.  Only think about your strength and your muscles.

But since you are curious, I've listed some numbers below to give you some idea.

Don't you think you will be considered strong if you can consistently with good form for full range reps

  • Deadlift 330 pounds for 4 reps
  • Squat below parallel with  275 pounds for 5 reps
  • Overhead press 145 pounds for 5 reps
  • Bench press 235 pounds for 5 reps
  • Bent row 215 pounds for 5 reps

These are just numbers I have lifted in the last year.  I started with extremely light weights in February of 2016.  These numbers were what I worked up to in about a year.

I think this is quite strong.  Strong enough.  You don't need to get that much stronger, unless you want to.  You can just keep working with these weights, cycling them up and down to avoid injury and maintain your strength foundation for as long as possible. 

Here is a little more about me so you can see where I'm coming from and adjust your standards up or down.  I know some of you can do a lot more than this.  And some of you have a smaller frame and will need to adjust accordingly.

  • 53 years old
  • 6'-0" tall
  • Current weight is 275 pounds.  Working towards 250 or less
  • Never used steroids
  • Am on testosterone replacement therapy the last 3 years
  • Started lifting as a high school senior
  • Lifted consistently from age 18 to 29 (11).  Weight varied from 215 pounds to 245 pounds.  I was the strongest at this age (of course).  Deadlifted 500 pounds.  Squatted 315 for 20 reps.  Benched 275 pounds (with very bad form).
  • Did not lift from 29 to 43 (14 years).  Weight ballooned to 320 pounds, usually around 300 pounds.  This time period really set my life back, including my strength.  Although I was strong from my earlier lifting, carrying myself around and bending over backwards for my wife.
  • Started lifting again at age 43.  I suffered a terrible shoulder injury from horrible benching form and could not lift for 2 years.
  • Experimented with heavy partial lifting very infrequently from age 45 to 52.  This was the Static Contraction Training from Pete Sisco.  I did lift some incredibly high weights at this time for partials.  This might be a good way to develop the idea of huge weights and to help build a strength foundation.
  • Started back on conventional lifting February 2016 (age 52-1/2).  Below parallel squats, conventional deadlifts, overhead presses and good form on the bench press.  When I started this I was just using tiny weights.

How a Strength Foundation Helps You

  • It's better to be strong, than weak
  • You look strong
  • Your muscles will get bigger
  • Your body will be harder
  • You can get a flatter belly with proper eating
  • You will look leaner even if you are overweight
  • People don't mess with you
  • You are left alone
  • You can do most things by yourself
  • You are usually one of the strongest men in the room
  • You will not be afraid of other people
  • Other people will respect you
  • Some people will fear you
  • You can rely on yourself
  • Aging will not be so difficult

From Starting Strength

Older Men Need to Lift

Quote -

The most significant loss in physical capacity with advancing age is strength – the ability to produce the force of muscular contraction. Your ability to interact with your environment effectively is predicated upon your ability to exert the force of muscle contraction against the system of levers that comprises the skeleton, and therefore to control your own body's mass and the masses of the physical objects you interact with.

All the other physical problems associated with age – the loss of muscle mass and balance and bone density, the increased risk of diabetes, and the much higher risk of physical injury – are related to either the loss of strength itself or the process by which this loss occurs. Balance, endurance, power, accuracy, and speed are all aspects of strength. And the things we do to remain strong – the use of our muscles to do physical work and the associated use of carbohydrate as the fuel for muscle contraction – keep our metabolism functioning normally, thus preventing the acquisition of Type II diabetes, and perhaps even dementia.


Women Are Attracted to Stronger Men

  • Some women will throw themselves at you
  • They will squeeze your big arms
  • They will run their hands over your powerful chest
  • They will love to hug you trying to get their arms around your big back
  • They will grab your round butt
  • You can use your strength to pick girls up
  • Twirl them. 
  • Lift them off the ground
  • Dance with them close to you
  • Hold them off the floor when you dance
  • Put them on your lap
  • Kiss them more passionately
  • Hold girls off the ground and kiss (or sex) them
A powerful strength foundation lets you have more fun with women

Reasons You Don't Lift Even Though it is the Best Method to Get Strong and Be Masculine

  • You're married
  • You have a live-in girlfriend
  • You have children
  • You work more than 40 hours a week
  • You don' t have much time off
  • You drive an hour or more to work each day
  • You're lazy
  • You did not start in high school
  • You're very skinny
  • You're very fat
  • You're out of shape
  • You're worried about looking foolish
  • You're scared of injury

Many of the items on the list have to do with a lack of time.  No time for yourself and your needs is a huge problem for most men.  It's why most men live a very substandard life and probably why they die young.  It's why I started this website.

If you are intent on making your life as great as possible, you will need to shed as many time-wasters as possible, including the enormous time sink of being married.

All the other reasons can be overcome with persistence, patience and will.  Each workout will build on itself.  You will make gains after a few months and outstanding gains after years of effort.

Keep thinking of the benefits of a strength foundation and learn to love the iron.

A few minor thoughts

  • Lifting weights is good for fatter men because you will already be somewhat strong from carrying your excess body weight around. As your muscles bet bigger, the fat starts to diminish and not look so terrible.
  • Skinnier men have the advantage of a small gain in strength will usually have a dramatic affect on your muscle size.

So lifting works for both types of men.

If you're skinny-fat, it's critical that you get lifting.  I'm sorry, but this is the worst look for men.  You'll thank me after seeing how 6 months of dedicated lifting building a strength foundation will transform your body.

Strength Foundation versus Functional Training

Functional training looks like a good way for you to get hurt while not making any progress.  Certainly you will not make any gains on your strength foundation if you are not consistently adding weight over time to major lifts.  And being injured and not being able to workout at all will set you back.

Functional training is what you do in addition to or after you do your foundation strength training if you need it for a specific sport you are tying to excel in.

Most of you don't need to bother with functional training anyway.

Functional is only good for learning how to do your sport.  It is specific to the sport.  If you aren't participating in a sport, there is no need to do functional training.

Balancing on balls is not safe.

Explosive movements in an unbalanced state are not safe.

You will develop tremendous balance by squatting below parallel with a progressively heavier weight on your back and pressing larger and larger weights over your head.  These lifts are far safer, if done correctly, than functional training.

Squatting below parallel will make your legs flexible enough.

Deadlifting will create a strong resilient back.

Just get stronger building your strength foundation.  Your life will be better, easier and the aging process will not be so terrible. 

› Strength Foundation

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