Of course, the heading of this piece suggests that many men do find it is time to spare, and there probably is truth in that.
This is a time when men are often faced with questions about the purpose and function that they have. And as for sex…. well….
The children may be leaving home, a long-term partner may be going through her menopause and finding a new purpose in her own life, so the dynamics of the relationship may be changing, and then of course there are the symptoms of declining testosterone to cope with…..
Now as men, testosterone is the thing that keeps us going: it gives us a sense of drive, purpose, and probably allows us to set boundaries, go out into the world with confidence, to get things done, and it generally gives us a sense of confidence, an awareness of our own masculinity and pride in what we achieve in the world.
But unfortunately, around 50 years of age, testosterone begins to decline, and a man may find that his drive, his motivation, his sense of purpose, and his self-confidence have all taken a knock.
He probably puts on weight. His sex drive declines.
So this is a very dramatic change, or least it can be, and it’s not helped by the fact that it’s accompanied by physical weakness and a number of mental or emotional symptoms, often including depression and irritability.
Sometimes experts say that depression is actually a consequence of the social and cultural changes that a man goes through at this time of life, rather than a symptom of declining testosterone.
Maybe. But what I think is almost certainly true is that the two effects generally work together, and the outcome can be what we call the midlife crisis. This is a time of self reflection, of seeking a new purpose, and perhaps, when no such purpose exists, a sense of purposelessness and even despair.
These are not attractive characteristics, either to experience personally, nor for the people around a man who is experiencing the more intense emotional and physical changes that develop around midlife.
So one of the things that can help a man (and his friends and family) to cope with these changes is a clear purpose and mission — something that is important to him, something that he can take pride in achieving as he moves into midlife.
But there are other things that can dramatically help a man to cope with these changes at the time of midlife: it’s really mostly about self-help, which means finding counseling, perhaps or therapy, if it’s needed.
It might mean finding a friend who can be trusted as a confidante, or forming a group of men who are going through the same experience and who can share their emotions, thoughts and feelings.
It certainly means adapting the way you enjoy sex. One thing’s for sure: sex is going to occur less often, because your sex drive and libido have decreased (as, probably, has your partner’s).
And then, there is also the question of muscular atrophy, which takes place slowly from the age of 50, and increases its pace as the man moves into old age.
One answer to this is testosterone supplementation, and a very effective answer it is, too. But along with testosterone supplementation there has to be a degree of self-help, particularly where physical fitness is concerned.
Both aerobic and strength building exercises are very necessary to maintain muscle development and physical strength, besides giving a sense of well-being due to the production of endorphins in the brain.
Now one of the things you’re going to do here, probably, being a man, is to seek out a personal trainer and engage him in your fight against aging. That is expensive and possibly restrictive.
But fitness is important. Because how fit you are determines how much you are likely to enjoy sex. Fitness is linked to sex and sexual capacity.
I have a different suggestion.
Use the Adonis Golden Ratio by John Barban
This is a fitness program for men. In fact, it’s actually a fitness program designed specifically for every individual man who uses it. That’s to say, it is tailored specifically to your physiology. That’s why it’s so helpful at building muscle development and stopping muscle atrophy in mid life.
When you sign up, you fill in a questionnaire which gives the program sufficient information to design a personalized exercise program and personalised nutrition program that you can print out.
These are quite sophisticated documents, because they are tailored to you individually.
But the sophistication of the system doesn’t stop there: you can actually download these programs onto your iPhone or tablet so that you have been with you at all times.
That means that you can take them to the gym and use them there, or you can take them into your fitness suite at home and use them in privacy. Obviously for those who don’t like gyms this is a massive benefit.