Masters Athletes books?


Workouts that once were a breeze are now really hard.I have to admit that I think I have arrived at a new stage in my workout life at age 57. I'd love to read up on how to work out as one (hate to say it) ages but still do hard, vigorous workouts. I used to do Cathe's monthly 6 day a week rotations and now I find them hard. I burn out by the 3rd week or if I push it I get an injury. :( But ... I don't want to roll over and quit or just do "sit and be fit" workouts" either? Any advice? I can't afford to work with a trainer but I want to learn how to train myself safely.


Hi Colleen,

Personally, I think the 6 workout-a-week thing is overkill at any age. Working hard that many days a week burned me out the same way when I was in my late 20's/early 30's. I'm 41 now.

I train hard 3-4 times a week (kettlebells, weights, crossfit type stuff) and find that to be plenty. My body gets good recovery, I'm feeling wicked strong, and mentally, I find myself embracing every workout (as opposed to dreading).

What are your fitness interests? FWIW, I find kettlebell training to be very joint friendly, but still really challenging.


Do you mean the duration of a single workout is hard or just keeping a rotation going?

I'm 30, in pretty good shape and I burn out by the 3rd week of rotations as well. Especially things with little variation like Insanity or Chalean Extreme). I also only work out 5x a week and find that any more does not allow my body sufficient rest (although I really turn it on when I do work out).

Have you seen any evidence of physiological changes (loss of strength, flexibility, CV endurance)? Or do you think it's a mental thing, like it's more difficult to focus?

Are you using lighter weights or taking rests where you weren't before?


I can relate to what you are saying. I am 53, and 2 or 3 years ago decided I was tired of being so tired and decided to scale back my workouts. I really enjoyed scaling back, but I lost a lot of strength and aerobic conditioning unfortunately. I was still working out 6 days a week but doing walking, Leslie, and time saver weight premixes with lighter weights. I felt really good, not tired or burned out anymore, but when it came to climbing several flights of stairs or going for a short hike, forget about it. I was too short of breath and weak in the legs. All this to say I decided I was too young to be that "old" and so forced myself to get back into it with full step workouts and then STS weights, and now STS cardio. I am in a lot better shape but I still feel like its just no fun to work out hard anymore. When I was younger I LOVED the hard breathing sweating totally exhausted feeling of a hard workout. Now I hate it. And so I don't know what to do now. Its funny you posted this because I was going to post the same thing. Should I continue to push myself and not enjoy the workout or should I just scale back, enjoy light workouts, and not try to hike or expect that I can have a decent fitness level?????
I guess another option is to do only a couple of hard workouts a week instead of every single day. Maybe I can maintain at least.


I've been doing Cathe since 2003 when I was around 50. Before that I did the Firms and Tracy Long TLT'. I took the plunge into Cathe with the Body Blast series and I've been hooked ever since.
I love following Cathe's monthly posted rotations. They keep me mixing things up without having to plan but I tore my rotator cuff last Spring (didn't recognize the signs of over training the shoulder until I tore it)had surgery last May and had to start all over with rehab etc.
I used STS to rebuild and it was great .. 3,5 & 8 lb DB and a 10 lb BB to start and now I'm up to 12 or 15 lb DB and 35# BB.
This winter I did the STS & Shock Cardio rotation which I finished in April and felt pretty good.
But ... Cathe's March & her July rotations are doing me in. They seem to be harder than STS/Shock Cardio!!! I'm dead by the 3rd week.
I guess I want to make sure I train smart but still keep up my Cathe fix. That's why I wondered if there's some good books on the "mature athlete" that I could read.
Thanks so much for letting me talk about this. My non Cathe friends just don't get it. If my house was on fire aside from my DS, DH & pets I'd grab my Cathe DVD's and computer downloads. Pretty sick huh?


Hi cocob1,

I had to look at how I wanted to workout for just the opposite reason, most of Cathe's workouts were too hard for me to start with, and I didn't have all the ones for her rotations. I chose to look up the principles & methods behind fitness & sports training so I could develop rotations that I could do that would increase my level of overall fitness.

There are many books & free articles about periodization & sports training, you don't necessarily have to be involved in a sport to benefit from that approach.

I generally use a wave type structure in planning a micro cycle (week long, or so), meso cycle (month long), or macro cycle, 3 month (or however) long, meaning there would be an easy month, moderate month, harder month, followed by easy, etc.

There are many elements you can change, focus, length of workout, intensity, impact, plus light, moderate, heavy weights. you get the idea.

You could even use the exact same routine, like say Power Max, do the 6" on Monday the 8" on Wednesday & the 4" inch step on Friday. Alternate with weights like Pure Strength on the alternating days, have a day off or two. Actually might do something like that for August.

Here is one article with some things you could vary during weeks & months, folder/periodization.html

Don't get me wrong, I'd love to do all Cathe routines as produced & be able to jump into her monthly rotations, but I think that's a "someday" for me, in the meantime, I plan for things that I can do in a systematic way to prevent injury & get the results I want:

mainly to be "Healthy, Strong, & Fit"

There really is a Cathe for just about anything you would like to do!

Linda :)
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I am in my 30's and I burn out, too! I have found that rest days and yoga days are vital for me. Also, flax seed oil has changed my life. If you eat fish, fish oil is even better for joint health. I take flax everyday and my recovery time is shorter and I swear my joints feel better. I have purposely gone a week or so without it and I really noticed a negative difference when I don't take it. That is just my 2 cents.

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