Hard Core at 50

Reshape your body at any age



When I started contemplating competing in body building, I was a 50-year-old slob. I weighed 232 pounds with a flabby 38-inch barrel for a waist.

But after I developed my successful dietary and nutrition regimen, I now step on stage at 167 pounds with a 28-inch waist. And I win. Well, most of the time.

In 2016, I placed first in the National Gym Association (NGA) Kentucky Natural Classic Light Heavy and second in the NGA Rocky’s NEO Bodybuilding Championships Light Heavy competition.

In developing a foundational program that allows me to perform harder and stronger with a greater pump and faster recovery, I experimented with dietary supplements until I found the ones that work for me.

I continue to try new supplements. But while I do like trying new approaches, some products have earned my undying loyalty. I stay with them, month after month, win after win, because of the results I get and science that backs their use.


One of the things I’ve learned is how to get the most out of the body’s anabolic hormones. The body’s own production of growth hormones and testosterone diminishes and becomes deranged with age, and higher levels of toxic forms are metabolized and circulated that, instead of building muscles, contribute to serious diseases. My regimen tames the bad testosterone and emphasizes producing the forms that have healthy effects on muscle repair and regeneration as well as provides insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and related muscle repair and regeneration peptides.

Declining levels of growth factors in bodybuilders—especially IGF-1—reduce their ability to add on new and larger muscle and thus impair achieving the ultimate in physical performance. Even if you’re 35 to 40, although you’re feeling fit as ever, you have probably begun losing skeletal muscle, the tissue that provides your strength and mobility.

“Slow, inexorable muscle wasting occurs even in healthy individuals who engage in regular aerobic exercise, but it usually goes unnoticed for decades,” notes science writer Janet Raloff in an August 10, 1996 report posted on the Science News online website. “In fact, the body hides its loss by subtly padding affected areas with extra fat.”

Here are some of the ingredients I rely on to achieve my muscle success.

First-milking bovine colostrum. Bovine colostrum (BC) is a foundational supplement for all body builders, endurance and strength athletes. The golden first milking from the mother caw that has given birth, BC provides immune and growth factors needed for the survival of newborn calves. BC contains super concentrates of IGF-1, a peptide that signals the body to repair and grow muscle cells as well as all 87 super members of the IGF family, growth hormone, testosterone and immune boosters. BC keeps muscles strong for training; aids repair; builds up immunity and endurance.

Diindolylmethane (DIM). DIM busts plateaus. This phytonutrient helps men keep up testosterone levels to tap into their brown belly fat and get lean. Vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale and cauliflower are sources of indole-3-carbinol (I3C), which the body converts into 3,3'-diindolylmethane during digestion. DIM acts as a testosterone regulator, making sure the body produces safe forms that build muscle and do not cause cancer. Androgens such as testosterone are necessary hormones for the normal function of the prostate; however, the body tends to produce toxic dihydrotestosterone (DHT) with age that is linked with higher cancer risk. DIM inhibits the actions of DHT; when androgen-dependent cells were treated with DIM, the level of PSA decreased, which suggests that it functions at a gene expression level.

ZMA®. Deficiencies of zinc and magnesium decrease testosterone and insulin-like growth factor. Mineral assessment has received attention as an important determinant of physical performance. In particular, there is evidence that magnesium exerts a positive influence on anabolic hormonal status, including testosterone, in men.

Zinc Monomethionine Magnesium Aspartate or ZMA aids recovery. One study at Western Washington University with Dr Lorrie Brilla studied 12 NCAA division II football players who took ZMA nightly during an eight-week spring training program and a separate selected group assigned a placebo pill. The athletes taking the ZMA reportedly had 2.5 times greater muscle strength gains than the placebo group; the ZMA group increased by 11.6 percent compared to only 4.6 percent in the placebo group. The ZMA group also had 30 percent increases in testosterone levels (compared to 10 percent in the placebo group). College football players taking 450 mg of magnesium aspartate and 30 mg of zinc over a 7-week period demonstrated a significant increase in quadriceps and hamstrings torque and power measurements and increased concentrations of total testosterone, free testosterone, and insulin-like growth factor.

I don’t always have time to shop for these individual ingredients. Flex 6, a body building supplement from Immune-Tree, supplies these foundational nutrients and contains first-milking colostrum, which is the richest source of anabolic factors.

Elisabeth I Heath, Lance K Heilbrun, Jing Li, Ulka Vaishampayan, Felicity Harper, Pam Pemberton, and Fazlul H Sarkar A phase I dose-escalation study of oral BR-DIM (BioResponse 3,3′- Diindolylmethane) in castrate-resistant, non-metastatic prostate cancer Am J Transl Res. 2010; 2(4): 402–411. Published online 2010 Jul 23. PMCID: PMC2923864 Brilla LR, Conte V. Effects of a novel zinc-magnesium formulation on hormones and strength. J Exerc Physiol Online. 2000;3:26-36
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