TACTIC 5 Landmark years

5.24 Once you are over 30 years old, you may come to see certain birthdays as landmark points—35, 40, 45 and 50, for example. Set each of these birthdays as video taping days for physique and lifting. And of course each one of these landmark recordings should see improvement relative to the previous one. Gear the in-between years for keeping you on track to becoming better as you get older.

5.25 Bodybuilding and strength training are wonderful activities for many reasons, one of them being their potential for enabling you to improve with age, even well into your middle years. (^e older you are when you start, the older you can be and still make progress in strength.) And when you start to regress due to aging, work hard to hold onto as much strength as possible. ^en, because your peers will deteriorate much faster than you will, you will continue to get better, relatively speaking, as the years go by. Exercise keeps you young.

5.26 Rise to the challenge of proving all this. Get yourself down on video tape on each of your landmark birthdays. Remind yourself daily of the importance of doing your utmost every day to be better next time around.

5.27 Break each five-year period into six-month slots, and make visible and measurable improvement over each of those periods. Add up those six-month stretches of improvement over five years and you will produce dramatic change.

5.28 Never settle for anything other than your finest effort to be your best on your six-month deadline days. And never settle for doing anything other than your very best each day of the journey. You have to get the individual days in good order if you are to achieve your long-term goals.

5.29 What you concentrate on for a given landmark year will reflect changing values as you age. At ages up to 35 or so your training focus may be solely on size and strength. As you approach 40 or 45 you might place more emphasis on flexibility and a low percentage of bodyfat. Around age 40 you may be overhauling the goals to target. Maybe getting to 8% bodyfat will be more important than making a 300-pound bench press. Perhaps having a resting heart rate under 55 will be more important than deadlifting 500 pounds. Perhaps at 50 you will want to hit 250, 350 and 400 in the big three at say 175 pounds bodyweight, but simultaneously have a resting heart rate of 55. At age 35 you may have wanted 350, 450 and 550 at 210 pounds, but paid no attention to your resting pulse. (^ough a low resting heart rate is usually an indicator of a healthy and efficient heart, it can be a symptom of some health problems.)

5.30 Whatever interests you for the time being, set specific goals for it—say 10% bodyfat, not just "to get lean"; to have a resting heart rate of 60, not just "to be fit," etc. ^en nail yourself to a specific time deadline—e.g., six months from today, not "quite soon"—and devise the strategy to reach your target.

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