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Hey guys – Can you really build muscle at any age?  Most definitely.  I think this video below of one of my own Denver personal training clients  speaks more than any words I could write.

When this personal training client of mine came to me first, he was pumped full of painkillers and any movement in general was like watching a squeaky wheel throwing off rust.  He was what you might call a ‘fixer-upper’.

He had three major factors going for him though.

  1. He had a great attitude
  2. A desire to change
  3. A willingness to do what it took.

And thats all I could ever ask of any of my clients.  Because sometimes, thats all it takes.

Fast forward 8 months later…  I think you will agree that the transformation is remarkable.  Watch the video to find out at the end the age he really is.  Don’t be fooled by the muscle – this guy has some years on him:


Of course, he’s moving a little slow in that video.

Thats because last month he slipped on ice and broke one of his ribs.  He was back in the gym and working out pain free in 4 days.  That’s because he has trained his body to be not only more muscular, but also functional.  A smart, functional body will recover better than a pure bodybuilders body.

Bottom line:  Tom has built his body to look good, but also to be able to do anything.

How did we do it?  Three major steps.

Every workout was different.

Yep, that’s right, every workout involved new exercises, new challenges and new weights and rep ranges to keep his body guessing.

Three planes of movement.

By moving Tom through the front/back, side/side and twisting planes of movement, no one muscle ever got all the attention – but over time, they all got attention enough to create what you see in the video above.  The result?  A body that can go anywhere at any time.

A read and react attitude.

Knees hurting?  Trouble with the left shoulder?  Feeling a little run down?  Our workout plan was changed every day to react to whatever Tom’s body was showing us.  Fatigue meant a stretch session, Joint issues meant other parts ‘got to play’ that day.  When we workout with respect to what the body is telling us, we not only get better results faster, we reduce the chance of injury and improve the bodies confidence and anticipation of the upcoming workout!

And that’s how Tom got to where he is today.  Not bad for a 72 year old.  The scary part… he’s still got more improvement to go!  Just goes to show you can build muscle at any age.

Want to know what was really amazing about what you just saw?

Tom has never used a leg press in any of our sessions.

We have never him in a squat rack.

We have never made him do leg extensions or leg curls.

Do you get your workouts to ‘read and react’ or do you follow through with the plan regardless?

Do you work in 3 planes of motion?

Of course, you can follow a more traditional bodybuilding route as well – this guy does a great job at it and we can all take a leaf from his book:


But you probably shouldn’t wait until you are as old as these guys before you start working out 🙂

Yours in health,

Jamie Atlas

  • Clifford Jan 19, 2010 Reply

    i Must say, these three points are winners

    “1. He had a great attitude
    2. A desire to change
    3. A willingness to do what it took.”

    well said, thanks for the share!

  • fitprosarah Jan 20, 2010 Reply

    LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • jamieatlas Jan 22, 2010 Reply

    Hey Clifford – thanks for the post! You are right, I think with those three things in place we can achieve almost anything!

    Sarah – you love it? Imagine how cool it is for me to get to train him every week!

  • Larry Feb 2, 2010 Reply

    I like the concepts in your blog. Especially this one about gaining muscle at any age. At The Specific Chiropractic Center we teach people and recommend people to go to personal trainers who have the drive to teach the average person. It is great to get a personal trainer who can push you but it has to be appropriate, fun, and efficient for a given persons age and health condition. Thanks for the great blog. I look forward to reading more.

  • Russ Aug 4, 2011 Reply

    thats great iam 72 and been working out on and off most of my adult life. Always doing the same exersise, joined a new gym, had a couple of sessions with a trainer and could not believe how pumped up I was after my workout, And I cant wath to get back in the gym.

  • Bill Mack Apr 28, 2012 Reply

    Can’t see face ? How do we know he is 70?

  • Bill Mack May 21, 2012 Reply

    I am also 72 and have gained muscle and lost 25 lbs, feels great, still have gut trying to get rid of.

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