Strength Loss

Ask or answer questions, discuss and express your views

Moderators: Ironman, Jungledoc, parth, stuward

Post Reply
RenExi
former lurker
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:50 pm

Strength Loss

Post by RenExi » Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:59 pm

If you go without regular exercise for some period of time, is strength loss guaranteed? If so, to what degree, and what are the risk factors (if any) that would speed up or ensure this loss? also, i would be grateful to know the physiological mechanisms responsible. oh and feel free to cite studies, i'll read them all. thanks in advance
-Mike.


Matt Z
Deific Wizard of Sagacity
Deific Wizard of Sagacity
Posts: 4505
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 1:19 pm
Location: Pennsylvania
Contact:

Post by Matt Z » Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:02 pm

If the training layoff is extended, strength loss is pretty much guaranteed (at least if the exercise is in any way strength related). Strength loss will probably be more rapid for older trainees.

Also, dieting without exercise will accelerate strength loss, since it's difficult to lose weight without losing at least some muscle mass (weight training while dieting will help maintain muscle mass).

User avatar
stuward
moderator
moderator
Posts: 6650
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2007 5:44 pm
Location: Halifax, NS

Post by stuward » Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:21 pm

Once you stop exercising, and you get past the super compensation period, after a week or so, you will start to lose muscle and strength. The rate you lose will depend on a lot of factors but generally, without exercising, men peak in their 20s and women in their teens. Then they tend to lose about 10% per decade and as Matt said, the loss can accelerate after about 60.

The good news is that with proper exercise that trend can be halted and reversed virtually at any point. It takes resistance exercise. Cardio will not build muscle. It has to be progressively challenging resistance exercise.

If you are approaching middle age and you have not exercised in some time, you need to start now. The amount of muscle that you carry in middle age is directly correlated to life expectancy from all causes and also to quality of life in old age.


Stu

caangelxox
Member
Member
Posts: 770
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 12:08 pm

Post by caangelxox » Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:56 pm

Will I ever stop hijacking and just make my own thread? I don't know. Maybe some day I will get the message.

User avatar
stuward
moderator
moderator
Posts: 6650
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2007 5:44 pm
Location: Halifax, NS

Post by stuward » Tue Apr 01, 2008 6:07 pm

You have to know your own body and how you respond. It's a balancing act. That's why you need a conjugate periodization schedule, so you can keep those skills fresh.


corless319_
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 269
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:19 pm

Post by corless319_ » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:15 am

iron man just tell the angel person what hijacking is. I think that works better. haha just my opinion. Also on topic I have heard that sometime its takes a week for an intense workout to heal possibly more. There is a lot of information on muscle gain strength gains vs recovery time and diet. It's all a complicated equation. Practically if you feed your self adequate food you'll gain size and strength but you have to be eating the right food and doing the right workouts and have the proper rest time. Trial by error usually works the best but be open to new ideas and suggestions.

User avatar
stuward
moderator
moderator
Posts: 6650
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2007 5:44 pm
Location: Halifax, NS

Post by stuward » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:49 am

corless319_ wrote:.. Also on topic I have heard that sometime its takes a week for an intense workout to heal possibly more. ...
This depends a lot on what level of training the person is at. More advanced people need to accumulate stimulus over several workouts and then need up to a month to recover. That why periodization is so important for them. A beginner can rarely work intense enough to need more than 48 hours of recovery. That's why beginners should use frequent whole body programs. That's actually the definition of beginner/intermediate/advanced. It's all dependant on recovery.

User avatar
Jungledoc
moderator
moderator
Posts: 7578
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 7:11 am
Location: Kudjip, Papua New Guinea

Post by Jungledoc » Sat Apr 05, 2008 2:50 am

How I read RenExi's post was this (and it's something I've wondered about for a while): If I miss workouts, how long will it take for me to start losing strength? That's on my mind this week, as I've been sick and too wiped out to work out. If I miss a week, will I be able to take up where I left off? Two weeks?

User avatar
TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
Posts: 3129
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Va Beach, Va

Post by TimD » Sat Apr 05, 2008 7:18 am

The reason you and the OP aren't getting many definate answers, is because the question is to broad. Eeryoe is different. Depends on a lot of factors. You're existing state of fitness, your age, amounts of sleep, etc, etc, etc. There is no one size fits all. I would imagine that once your recovered fully from illness, the week or two off really won't create much loss in any event, but the only way to know for sure is to try it and find out by actually doing things. I would approach it like this, during your workout, start each exercise with a light warm up, and in crease u to your work set point. Slap a few lbs less than you'd normally use for a workset and doa rep with it, see how it feels, and either stay there or try it from where you left off. I do know this, after layoffs a lot longer than what you're talking about,it doesn't take long to get back to where you were. I don't know who came up with the "muscle memory" phrase, but it does seem to hold true. It's much easier to get back to where you were, than to have gotten to that point originally.
Tim

User avatar
Stephen Johnson
Exalted Seer
Exalted Seer
Posts: 2097
Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Location: New York City

Post by Stephen Johnson » Sat Apr 05, 2008 8:06 am

Jungledoc wrote:How I read RenExi's post was this (and it's something I've wondered about for a while): If I miss workouts, how long will it take for me to start losing strength? That's on my mind this week, as I've been sick and too wiped out to work out. If I miss a week, will I be able to take up where I left off? Two weeks?
If you've been sick, you can't realistically expect to resume training at the same level that you were prior to illness. It will take time - perhaps as much as a month - before you're back in form. But you'll recover faster than a newbie will gain, most likely.

For many people, illness is in part the result of overtraining. That's something for you to think about while you're on the mend.

User avatar
Jungledoc
moderator
moderator
Posts: 7578
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 7:11 am
Location: Kudjip, Papua New Guinea

Post by Jungledoc » Sun Apr 06, 2008 10:01 pm

Thanks, guys. My son is all freaked out because we haven't lifted for six days (we usually lift together), and says that he's going to work out today whether I do or not, cause he's sure that he'll lose ground otherwise. I keep telling him that a week or two off won't make much difference, but I'm just the dad, so what do I know? We've both been plagued with viruses.

User avatar
TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
Posts: 3129
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Va Beach, Va

Post by TimD » Mon Apr 07, 2008 6:34 am

Jungledoc, seeing that there are no major problems involved, a break of 6 days could actually turn into a good thing. I know from experience, that when I've been hitting things hard, then take a week off, I can actually come back stronger, and periodic breaks for recup reasons are actually a positive thing.I am glad to hear your son has that attitude though. Unbridled go get em. Just encourage him, but let him know that an occasional break is a good thing.
Tim


Post Reply