FIT LIFE: Fitness by the Decade: Your 40's

Published: Jan. 17, 2020 at 9:54 AM CST
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Fitness in your 40s is all about preserving muscle mass.

Unless you are strength training, you start losing about five pounds of muscle per decade. Not only does this mean reduced functional capacity, but it could also be part of midlife weight gain.

Your goal to keep (perhaps even add) muscle is to do full-body strength training three days per week. These strength workouts should be focused on compound movements. Compound movements (like squats, bench presses, push-ups, chin-ups and rows) work multiple muscle groups, giving you an efficient way to get a better burn in your workout.

You'll also need to allow time between these workouts for muscle recovery.

Since it starts to take longer to recover in your 40s, you'll need at least one day off from strength training in between each full-body workout.

To help with recovery, it's also time to stop shortchanging your sleep! The body does its most important recovery and resetting functions while we sleep, so aim for at least seven hours per night.