Building muscles after 40 is a long, time-consuming process and everyone is well aware of that. Traditional strength training is also generally considered as a young man’s game, with teens and people in their 20’s and 30’s generally being more dedicated towards their fitness and being more capable of building muscles. However, the general idea that you cannot work on building muscle after 40 is completely wrong.
For men above 40 years of age, building muscles generally starts to become a dream with growing time, as and when they realize that they might have to give extra time, extra efforts and hit the gym regularly to achieve desired results. This is the time when they start to give up the entire idea of building their muscles at this age, because of the intrinsic fear of pushing their bodies and getting injured, at their age.
What happens with growing age and why exactly does the capability of building muscle after 40 goes down is because our muscles and surrounding tissues start losing their elasticity with age, which leads to loss of overall strength. The pain in the muscles when you overload them with heavyweight or push your body a little extra off-limits tends to increase by manifold times.
People above 40 also tend to develop a condition named sarcopenia sometimes, which makes the tissues of the muscles shrink, resulting in an overall decrease in strength as well as stamina. building muscles after 40 in such a condition becomes extremely difficult. Look for ways to prevent the development of sarcopenia.
Here are some ways and tips that you can follow to get your muscles building even after 40 because after all, age is just a number!
Lifting heavy weights is probably going to result in major, critical pain in your knees, shoulders, and other parts of the body. Since your muscles grow rigid by this age, it takes time to recover from such injuries and pains, which means, it might take a good amount of time for you to be able to start your routine training again.
The solution to this is going for lesser weights and avoiding the risk of injuries and pain. Lighter and weights and higher reps combined can do a good job in stimulating your muscle growth. Working out and building muscles, after all, are essentially linked with understanding your body well, and you must move at your own pace, and train with lighter weights, if your body doesn’t allow much higher weights.
If you feel that the muscle in some parts of your body is quite ‘tight’ or inflexible, stretching might be a good solution for you, at least you can always give it a try. Stretching tight muscles for a minute every day will lead you to good results in terms of improving the flexibility of your muscles.
3.Find new ways:
For building muscle over 40, you need to understand that increasing the weight every time you work out is not the only solution. As and when your age increases, increasing the weights every time becomes extremely difficult, but that does not mean you have to give up all your hopes of building muscles.
You will have to find your own way out of this. You can try different things like increasing your repetitions, reducing your lifting speed, or employing other techniques following your body, like rest-pause training, etc.
4.Take your time:
When you are in your twenties, that extra energy reflects in everything you do, even when you hit the gym. People run into the gym and get into the heavy stuff directly, which is not advisable when you’re in your 40’s.
If you do not take your time to warm up and cool down your body before and after you start doing any of the heavy stuff, you might fall prey to severe injuries and excruciating pains. You must understand the nature of your workout, your body’s capacity, and how strong you are, and accordingly give your body the time it requires to warm and up and cool down.
Rolling, certain alignment exercises, or dynamic activation drills can be useful for certain people under certain environments, but the same might not hold for every person. In a nutshell, listen to your body and try to gauge what works the best for your body, and work accordingly.
5. Eat well and rest well:
Your diet and your sleep are two of the most important things that will directly or indirectly affect every part of your body. Regular training after the age of 40 definitely isn’t easy, and you need to pair it with the right meals for your body to work well. If you’re not eating enough protein and your regular calorie intake is lesser than the number of calories that you burn, your entire muscle building and the recovery process is eventually going to suffer
For rest, you should take a day off every week from the heavyweights and give your body the proper sleep that it’s been lacking on for the six days of the week. Accumulating fatigue isn’t good for your body, and definitely not at your age. Resting is as important as exercising, but most of the time, we hear a belief that is majorly accepted by the gym culture which is a completely flawed idea. This must be discarded altogether because not only does it harms the body but also turns people aways from exercising and working out.
In all, your age must never come in your way of building muscles, and you must try to remove it if it ever does. You must avoid some things like skipping out on managing your nutrition and diet, skipping muscle groups, or being inconsistent and irregular with your training. Stop comparing yourself with others; somebody might be very fit at your age, but you can be so, and it is okay if you take more time to achieve it.
We hope these little tips on building muscles after 40 helps you, and you do not lose your hopes, and start working out. Remember that it is a long journey, but the results are always worth it. So, when are you beginning with your training?