How to Stay Fit After 40


Chances are if you’re reading this you’ve hit, or are over, the dreaded four-zero. But actually, that isn’t something you should be fretting over. One of the most significant factors you’ll begin to notice as you get older is that your ability to move freely may start to reduce. But, that doesn’t mean your exercise routine should alter. In fact, staying fit after 40 may be more straightforward than it sounds.

When you first began your fitness journey, usually at a very young age, most of us find ourselves following the same routine. Once you have slotted into a particular method, seeing the way out may seem impossible, and before you know it, it becomes your life. This is as staying healthy and fit are the things that a good percentage of us aim to accomplish in our lives. You can discover more at Vivotion blog.

However, eventually, there will become a time when our body will no longer function properly, mainly due to the dreaded occurrence of the ageing process. Of course, this can come as a disappointment because as fitness enthusiasts, we all want to be as strong as the old bodybuilders that we admire.

According to a new government campaign, keeping fit in mid-life can more than double the chances of a healthy retirement. So if you wish to continue the routines that you’re doing in your 20s, 30s and 40s, feel free to check out our guides to carry on your fitness journey.

Importance of Staying Fit after 40

No matter what age you are—young or old, staying physically fit is something we should attain. As much as our body can, we must put our physical activities in our list of top priorities.

Staying physically active can guarantee immediate and long-term health benefits. As we age, our body demands a high level of strength, speed or power, and an increase in mental health and social wellbeing.

As we get older, we need to accept the fact that our body will change and for us to have quality lives, we need to adapt accordingly. A study from the Centers for Disease Control explained that exercise could reduce your risk of:

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High blood pressure

Heart disease



Breast and colon cancer




According to studies in the Lancet, physical activity brings “a sense of purpose and value, a better quality of life, improved sleep, and reduced stress, as well as stronger relationships and social connectedness.” Another piece of research from the American Journal of Preventative Medicine claims that you can live longer up to five years!

When we say, you should stay fit it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to work out. Staying fit can also refer to your emotional, spiritual, social, intellectual, creative and financial well-being.

In the latter phases of our lives, many of us realize that the most important thing to do is to find meaning in whatever we do and to feel engaged with life.

How to Stay Fit and Healthy After 40

Yes staying fit and healthy once you have broken through the 40 barriers may seem daunting, but worry not as these tips will help to give your health a makeover.

How do you tackle ageing?

Check Your Weight

For healthy longevity, especially after 40, staying at an ideal weight is vital. People who are more prone to high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, depression, sleep apnea and numerous health problems tend to be the individuals who class as obese.

This is due to carrying extra weight which is detrimental to their heart health. If you want to lose weight, you should focus on your fat loss and not muscle loss.

When you weigh yourself, by all means, keep in mind that you need to preserve your muscle and lose your fat. The simplest way to gauge your fat loss is by keeping track of your waistline.

A conscious effort of regular exercise and healthy eating, and by monitoring your weight and waistline will help you prevent gaining excessive weight.

The first step to optimise your fitness after 40 is to get moving. Simple as that. Even if you’re 40 and above, you can tailor your workouts so you can be in the best shape of your life.

Work on Flexibility

To increase your level of flexibility, you can try some yoga and foam rolling. Did you know that once you’re unable to touch your toes while in a seated position, this might mean that your arteries have become stiff?

Also, you have an increased risk of heart attack or stroke, according to research published in the American Journal of Physiology.

Get 10,000 Steps a Day

One of the basic requirements for optimal health for people of all ages, including drinking adequate amounts of water each day, is taking 10,000 steps a day. This will ensure you are spending enough time out of a seated, relaxed position and instead are loosening your joints. These 10,000 steps don’t have to be from running; they can simply come from a pleasant walk around your local countryside or park.

Exercise Strength and Muscle Mass

As we grow older, we tend to lose muscle and gain fat, especially if we’re not active in building and sustaining our muscle mass. This is why the role of strength training has become an essential pillar of fitness in our lives.

Here are the exercises/workout routines you can try for strengthening and muscle mass:

HIIT or High-Intensity Interval Training

HIIT has been deemed as one of the most effective workouts as it’s been lauded for its fat burning, strength training and dynamic nature. It has been proven by many studies to be beneficial as we age as it produces changes at a cellular and genetic level.

You can include this variety of HIIT workouts in your weekly routine:

HIIT Squats

Contrary to belief, a squat is not just a leg exercise, but it also promotes body-wide muscle building by catalysing an anabolic environment. Are you ready to try the ultimate workout for your lower body?

You can follow the YouTube workout that we have provided for you down below. It’s a 7-minute HIIT workout that you can do at home—courtesy of DoctorOz on YouTube.

Lifting Weights

Sarcopenia is a part of our natural process where our body loses muscle mass from our mid-30s onwards. It can sometimes be barely noticeable to spot muscle loss; however, the annual loss of your muscle mass can be as much as eight per cent when you reach the age of 50 onwards.

A study from the American Journal of Physiology has revealed that you can improve your blood flow and can reduce the risk of diabetes in older adults with the help of weight training. On the other hand, research from Harvard University discovered that men who performed 20 minutes weight training tend to have less of an increase in the risky and age-related deep abdominal fat when compared to men who spent the same amount of time doing activities such as jogging, cycling or swimming.

Press Ups

The traditional press-up is one of the best all-around exercises available for you to try. As it works your upper and lower body, requiring you to lift and support your body weight.

You can do the traditional form of press up by following the guide that we have provided you down below. It is a YouTube workout courtesy of Calisthenic movement.

Regular exercise can keep your mood elevated with the release of endorphins, something that is a product of training. It also maintains and improves your memory and posture, and of course, prevents lifestyle and age-related diseases such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease, hypertension, and many more.

To prevent injury, we advise you not to start your routine with a high impact activity such as running without strengthening your muscles around your knees. Take a full consideration to this, especially if you’re over 40.

To work on your waist, you can try these exercises:

Russian Twists

This Russian twist exercise is a great exercise to get to the next level of fitness. In this video, you will learn the correct form and even more on activating that core.

You can follow the YouTube workout down below courtesy of STRETCHING SAMURAI.

Alternating Side Crunches

You can follow the YouTube workout instructions down below courtesy of Howcast. Perform 2-3 x 15 on each side.

Stay Active

Even if you’re at home or work, you can make a conscious effort to move more. You can stay active physically just by walking through the day.

Here’s how:

You can take a 20-30 minute break from your work just by walking around your office or the building. This will help you stretch your muscles and allow you to exercise your body without knowing it.

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If you have enough time, you can take the stairs instead of the elevator,

Suggest to your workmates to have a walking meeting,

You can do a few exercises such as squats, tricep dips or push-ups against your chair,

Stand while watching your favourite Television show

Walk around at every commercial break of your preferred TV program.

Your Diet

One of the first requirements to stay fit and healthy after 40 is to eat and maintain a balanced diet that will not just keep you at your ideal weight, but also nourishes us. To make preparations for a healthy and balanced diet, we advise following the tips down below:

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Keep carbs to a minimum

Eat more fresh fruits, vegetables, protein from nuts, seeds, beans, and legumes

Avoid fast foods

Less processed foods with added sugar and other additives

Use Turmeric in Cooking

Michael Caine, an Actor, revealed that turmeric helps keen his brain sharp as he has been taking it for long now. Even scientists from Australia suggested that he could be right.

According to Matt Lovell, a nutritionist who works with Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur football clubs, Curcumin is perfect for keeping older joints flexible and pain-free as it holds natural anti-inflammatory activity.

Furthermore, Turmeric is fat soluble, and some oils are needed for it to be absorbed. Also, to boosts its bioavailability, some black pepper is needed, too. Both turmeric and curcumin are known to be the most proven compounds which can influence a typical inflammatory response.

Eat an Apple a Day

A study in the journal Obesity shows that internal fat was reduced by 3.7% over five years for every 10-gramme increase in soluble fibre eaten. While researchers from the University of Iowa also discovered a ursolic acid was found in an apple peel.

This chemical helps to fight ATF4 protein which is to blame for mass and strength loss in old age. Eating an apple a day will help strike a blow to dangerous abdominal fat because it contains a high amount of soluble fibre.

This dangerous abdominal fat is prone to settling around the organs, especially in the middle age. The levels of the ATF4, Activating transcription factor 4, starts to accumulate to prevent healthy proteins from nurturing muscles as we get older. This can lead to an accelerated muscle-withering and weakness.

Me Time

Most importantly, now is the perfect time to create some ‘me time’ where we can focus on our growth. Many will argue that spending time on themselves is a luxury that cannot often be afforded. But make sure that the practice of enhancing your life should be included in your me time.

There are many ways this can be done. You can have your me time by discovering yourself and exploring new interests. Travelling, spending time in nature, more exercise and meditation can quickly become a part of your daily me time routine. With that being said, make sure to create time for yourself as it becomes more important for you to be able to deal with added stressors in your life.

Remember to spend quality time on yourself, doing the things that make you happy and more alive. Self-love is not selfish—this practice will guarantee you a healthy lifestyle not only for your body but also for your mind and soul.

Stress Management

To have a healthier life, we need to lessen our stress. When we have the capability and power to handle and manage our own thoughts and emotions, it will boost our immune function, improve our mood and it will benefit our overall health.

Deep breathing, meditation, exercise, massages, music and talk therapy are a few of the stress relieving techniques that are available for you to do in times of need. This might not change the stressor, but how you deal with it will.

Whenever we talk about staying fit after 40, it is more than about physical fitness. We hope that these tips and strategies will help you enhance your life and make it more meaningful as you grow older.

Author Bio: Isabel Speckman is a North Carolina-based freelance writer and work-from-home mother of three. In her 10 years as a professional writer, she’s worked in proposal management, grant writing, and content creation. Her writing skills may be confirmed independently on vivotion. Personally, she’s passionate about teaching her family how to stay safe, secure and action-ready in the event of a disaster or emergency.



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