Developing a Ten Station Inexpensive Barbell and Dumbbell Resistive Exercise Training Program
With Stretching Including an External Incentive System for “Young” Senior Adults
1. Select six permanent exercises, one for each major muscle group, two resistive exercises (RE) from 10 rotating RE exercises, and two mat stretches such as hamstrings and neck/hips. (Buy a book or use internet. Be cautious of RE systems for “old people.” The authors sometimes patronize older adults. Gerontologists label those 65 to 75 as “young old.” Young old are not usually building “six pack abs” but attempting to maintain strong muscles for elevating the metabolism and for balance and posture. Thus a ten station RE program lasting less than an hour is ideal for this goal.
2. The major muscle groups include the back, upper arms, shoulders, chest, thighs, and abdomen. Use books or internet to select one RE for each muscle group. Sometimes a given RE will exercise more than one muscle group.
3. Use a set/repetition/intensity/duration formula. For example, two sets, of eight repetitions, at 65 lbs, 3 days a week using barbells to do “bench press.”
4. Resistance is increased by adding more repetitions, more weight, or optionally, additional sets. One set is performing a RE 8 times. Intensity is the amount of weight in pounds lifted once. The eighth lift should exhaust the muscle so that a ninth lift would be very difficult. Wait one minute and complete the second set of the RE. Duration refers to three RE workouts a week with at least one day of rest between RE bouts.
5. Reps formula by muscle groups
a. “How many reps formula” for most muscles groups (chest, back, shoulders, upper arms) begins with 8 repetitions, then 10, stops at 12, then resistance is increased by adding more weight in five pound increments.
b. Abdominal muscles, repetitions gradation are 25-50, 51-75, 76-100 reps (sit-ups is an example)
c. Stretches can start with 4 repetitions (see instructions from book or internet)
6. For each weight selected, determine starting “intensity” using approximately30% to 40% of total body weight. For example, 180 lbs times .35% = 63 lbs. Because the standard 6’ bar weighs approximately 15 lbs., round up to 65 lbs. so as to keep balance when adding two ten lbs weights for a 65 lbs total lift. The lifter should be able to lift this 8 times, rest one minute, and complete a second set.
7. Perform stations according to renderings and instructions of selected exercises placed on a weight room bulletin board.
8. Build a home gym with a bench, barbells, dumbbells, floor mat, rubber stretching strap, bulletin board, & flexibility rubber strap ; or join a gym. Used equipment bought through newspaper ads or garage sales is a good way to start.
9. Develop a reward system based on “participation” and “performance.” But allow participation to be the main source of the incentive system with performance providing nominal bonus points.
10. A sample scientifically validated extrinsic-based incentive system follows:
a. For a resistive exercise workout, perform six permanent, two rotating, and two stretches for a total of ten exercises. Each station performed twice (two sets) according to formula receives one point; thus, a fully completed 10 station work-out earns ten points.
b. One bonus point may be obtained by increasing the exercise by two reps.
c. One bonus point may be obtained when adding weights to one of six permanent exercises. ( See one above)
d. Plateaus include 100 points, 250 points, 500 points, and 1000 points
e. Rewards: (points are accumulative, that is the first one hundred points gains a modest reward but the 100 points continue to accumulate toward the 250 point plateau where a more significant reward is gained; then 500; then 1000 and start over. Create your own specific rewards from modest to major.)
i. 100 points: i. movie ii. Trip to Barnes and Nobel iii. A new book, iv. other
ii. 250 points: i. 3 star restaurant , ii. A traveling Broadway show, iii. other
iii. 500 points: i. power tool from Sears/HD/Lowes, ii. Out-of-town trip, iii, other
iv. 1000 points: i. major destination trip, ii. New weight system for the gym, iii. other.