Once men hit 40, they may lose up to 8 percent muscle mass per decade. Because testosterone levels naturally drop, bodies tend to store less lean mass, which lowers how many calories you burn. It’s a slippery slope but not a lost cause.
To maximize your fitness potential at all stages of life, focus on building strength, improving balance, and increasing cardiovascular fitness. For men over 40 looking to build or maintain muscle, low-impact strength exercises targeting multiple muscle groups are the ticket. This type of training reduces undue strain on joints and spurs testosterone production.
How men can stay fit as they age
Heavy lower-body workouts, in particular, help produce hormones like cortisol, testosterone, and human growth hormone, which help stoke metabolism and maintain muscle mass.
Squats, lunges, leg presses, and deadlifts are all practical exercises for building strength in the lower body. Pushups, pullups, and rows are solid choices for the upper body. And planks and Russian twists are great core exercises for improving balance and stability.
In addition to strength training, men over 40 should focus on cardiovascular exercise. Cycling, running, swimming, and rowing are all excellent forms of aerobic training that keep your heart strong and healthy. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is another effective way to increase cardiovascular fitness.
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Supplementing a strength and cardio routine with flexibility exercises can also be beneficial. Yoga and Pilates are crucial for improving flexibility, balance, and posture. Stretching and foam rolling also enhances the range of motion and reduce the risk of injury.
Of course, eating a balanced diet with plenty of lean protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs is vital for maintaining a healthy weight and getting the most out of workouts. Taking multivitamins and other supplements like whey protein can also be beneficial to ensure your body gets the nutrients it needs for optimal performance.
Best workout for men over 40
Everyone should perform a thorough warmup regardless of age, but men over 40 need to activate muscles and prime the body for movement.
Begin with a dynamic warmup to prepare your body for the workout, such as a series of shoulder taps, hip bridges, and walking lunges with overhead reach.
For a sample strength workout, perform the following for recommended reps, sets, and rest:
- Reverse Lunge: 4 sets, five reps on each side, 30s rest
- Squat-to-Stand: 4 sets, eight reps, 30s rest
- Barbell Hip Thrusts: 3 sets, eight reps, 30s rest
- TRX Pushups: 3 sets, ten reps, the 30s rest
- Low Single-arm Cable Row: 3 sets, ten reps each side, 30s rest
- Band Pull-parts: 3 sets, ten reps, 30s rest
- Ab-Wheel Rollout: 3 sets, ten reps, 30s rest
Unilateral exercises such as bear crawl, pall off presses, and single-leg Romanian deadlifts are also perfect for targeting and strengthening imbalances.
Make sure to take at least one day of rest between workouts and slowly add weight to your exercises each time you work out.
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