After the price of many cryptocurrencies increased substantially in the last months of 2017, their respective blockchains also grew considerably following the increased interest. This makes the initial blockchain sync next to impossible on a slower or even a more modern hardware and internet connection. The listed minimum hardware requirements are usually enough for running a node but not for an initial sync. Plenty of configuration guides repeat the same advice that is no longer enough for reasonable sync times.
This usually includes some of the following steps:
increase database cache size - this helps up to a point as it is usually only a read cache, so it does not help with write speeds
use SSD - it is true that hey are way faster but blockchains are huge so not everyone can afford it or the write amplification that is required
use a light wallet - depending on the currency you may want to help the network by helping new nodes sync
download the whole blockchain from somewhere - you still have a lot of work verifying transactions