Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40

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Slowing down aging and looking young even after the 40s is definitely possible but there are some changes you have to make for bodybuilding workouts over 40. Never the less resistance weight training is the way to accomplish your fitness goals at any age.

Regular exercising especially at that age in your life is beneficial for brain function, health, metabolism, blood sugar control, heart health, and many others. So, let’s see what is it that you need to do to gain that muscle mass even though you are not in your 20s anymore.

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As you age your metabolism will slow down, that is just a fact, if you are inactive it will happen even faster. Bad habits, stress, poor nutrition, and lack of activity are causes of the metabolic slowdown without you even knowing it. But, it doesn’t have to be this way, there are methods to keep your metabolism running smoothly.

Do something that makes you happy, go to the gym regularly, eat healthy natural food, and don’t forget to have fun and laugh, all of these keep our metabolism at a healthy level, right where it should be.


Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40 - nutrition

Times when you could eat whatever you want and still look good, are over, unfortunately. Because of the metabolism facts mentioned earlier, nutrition has to change. No longer can you eat a lot of carbs, if you do they will turn into fat and not muscles. Daily calorie intake has to be in just a slight surplus. After the 40s cholesterol also starts to be one of the problems to be careful about, meaning your diet should be rich in healthy fats. A Keto diet or maybe carb cycling could be the answer here.

Preparing And Warming Up

Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40 - warming up

As you age it is extremely important to always warm up before training, at least 10 to 15 minutes. Doing some burpees, jumping jacks, and stretching would be very effective. With aging there comes less flexibility in our joints so the possibility of injuries is much greater, it can be even dangerous in case of poor posture and bad technique.

Using isometrics, unilateral work, and tempo adjusted to your possibilities will help get to the level where you are able to do a real quality workout. Let me just mention that in the age over 40 quality is more important than quantity, a way that young people often take. One way to get a more quality workout is to increase time under tension, meaning you have to do slower moves in a way that you need more time to do a single rep.

That makes muscles work harder without a huge amount of reps.


Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40 - cardio

Although resistance training is the right way to build muscle mass, for folks over 40 cardio is very, very important. It regulates metabolism and body fat, it keeps your heart and cardiovascular system healthy and strong preventing the possibility of a heart attack. 30 minutes twice a week on a treadmill will do wonders for your heart and it will also keep your joints healthy because treadmill, unlike pavement, is not bad for them.

Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40

As mentioned before, you have to be careful at the age you are in, which is over 40. Exercising every day like you were able to in your 20s and 30s is no longer an option so the best solution would be 4 days of exercise with 3 days of resting, workout days being Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and rest days being Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.

This way body can recuperate enough to be able to keep going without becoming too tired to exercise further, that is because at this age recovery time is a little longer than it used to be.

The warm-up

  • Burpees 10 reps
  • Jumping Jacks 10 reps
  • Push-ups 10 reps
  • Squats 10 reps
  • Spider crawl 10 reps

Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40 - dumbbellsMonday and Thursday

Exercise                              Warm Up         Workout    Rest (Sec)

Incline or flat bench

dumbbell press                     1 x 12               3-4 x 8-12     60

Feet-elevated push-up                                3 x 10-20      30

Inverted row                           1 x 12              3 x 10-20      60

One-arm dumbbell row                                3-4 x 8-12    30

Front plate raise                                            3 x 10-12      60

Dumbbell upright row                                   3 x 10-12      60

Floor crunch                                                  3 x 20           30

Tuesday and Friday

Exercise                               Warm Up          Workout   Rest (Sec)

Spider curl                             1 x 12               3 x 8-12       60

Lying dumbbell extension    1 x 12                3 x 8-12       60

Seated calf raise                   1 x 12                3 x 10-12     30

Leg press                               1 x 12                3 x 10-12     60

Single leg deadlift                                          3 x 10-12    30

Walking lunge                                                3 lengths    60

Lying leg raise                                                3 x 20         30

More Efficiency

Here are some tricks to make it easier and be more efficient in building muscles after 40. Find something that motivates you, keep it in your mind when you train, for instance, why is it important for you to get in shape, what does that mean for you or your loved ones.

Bodybuilding Workouts Over 40 - sleeping

Set up your goals and stick to them but, be realistic, it is a process and it won’t happen overnight. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, keep that in mind. Also, be realistic about your capabilities, don’t overdo it, and then quit because of that. Make a plan and follow it to the letter, don’t deviate from it.

Consult with an expert to get the info about what exercises and machines to use, and how to modify some exercises to adjust them better to your needs. You don’t need to use everything in the gym, some machines might not be appropriate for you at this age.

There is a thing that a lot of people neglect and that is sleep, folks your body needs at least 6 hours of sleep to be able to build muscles as it should, 8 would be better but at least 6 hours. Oh, and one more thing, it is absolutely OK to indulge yourself sometimes. You won’t ruin everything you worked for if you treat yourself with a slice of pizza, don’t be so strict to yourself, live a little.


OK folks, now you know what, how, and why to do it. You also got the info on the dangers of exercising the wrong way. For people over 40, it is imperative to be active and thus keep their health and of course, the thing we all want, look good. Knowing all that now there is no more excuse to be sitting on the couch, drinking beer and growing a big belly, get moving, and grow muscles instead.


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